A Veterinary Technician, or "Vet Tech" can make the Veterinarian more effective by running diagnostic tests, administering anesthesia, even cleaning cages if needed. That allows more time for the veterinarian to focus on diagnosis, determine treatment and talk to the owner.
On your last visit to the veterinarian’s office, you may have noticed staff member assisting the doctor, helping to care for your pet, perhaps helping to hold it during the exam. That person may be a veterinary technician – or “vet tech”. A vet tech can be an important part of any veterinary practice, assisting in treating injuries, helping with emergencies, collecting samples for testing, taking x-rays, and generally helping the veterinarian take the best possible care of their patients.
For people love pets, being a veterinary technician may seem like the dream job. While a veterinarian may need four years of specialized post-graduate education, an aspiring vet technician can get an associate’s degree in just two years through traditional college programs. With additional study, a vet tech can become an Approved Veterinary Assistant or even a Veterinary Technician Specialist. Like any profession, the more education you have, the greater your earning potential.
Anyone interested in becoming a vet tech should know it’s not an easy job. Most vet techs work long hours, and often, on weekends. Working in an animal clinic can be stressful, caring for ailing or injured pets, dealing with upset owners, uncooperative animals.
Another drawback to being a veterinary technician – as with most jobs working with animals – is the risk of injury. Many pets in the clinic are stressed by the unfamiliar environment; some may have an aggressive personality, and some are in pain. To avoid being bitten or clawed, a vet tech has to know how to handle any animal carefully.
This has been National Veterinary Technician Week, a time to recognize the contribution vet techs make to the health and well-being of our best friends. Visit the website at NAVTA.net for information about training and certification.
And remember to say thank you to your veterinarian’s vet tech, who helps them take care of your best friend, when you’re speaking of pets.