Sunday, December 16, 2012

Is Working As a Vet Tech the Right Job For You?

Me and Shadow.
Have you ever considered working with animals? If so, the occupation of veterinary technician may be right for you. Many people believe that this job would be so awesome because you get to play with cute animals all day long, but there is much more to it than that. You have to be cooperative, compassionate, and have a strong stomach among many other traits. There are many pros and cons to working as a vet tech, which I will share with you. I'm not trying to discourage anyone from becoming a veterinary technician, but as with any occupation, there are plenty of downsides.I'll start with the good stuff.

Pros of Working as a Vet Tech

  • You Get to Work With Animals - For any person that has a love for animals, this is the biggest plus to working as a veterinary technician. You get to pet, cuddle, and care for cute animals all day long! Plus, you are helping them to feel better if they are sick. That feeling is wonderful. If they aren't sick, you are still contributing to their health and well-being. 
  • Job Security - Occupations in the veterinary field have very high job security. The pet industry is one of the largest industries right now and is only growing larger. Veterinary medicine is advancing as well. There are many pet owners who are willing to do everything they can to help out there furry family members and therefore there is always a demand for high quality veterinary care and services. 
  • Educate Others - While working as a vet tech, you will be educating others. Educating pet owners is a big part of the job. Clients can be educated about the importance of spaying and neutering, adopting pets, and so much more. You'll be spreading the word about important topics that matter to you. 
  • You Will Learn Something New Everyday - Everyday you go to work, you can count on learning something new that you didn't know before. I personally love learning all I can as a vet tech and cherish everything the information I'm able to gather. 
Me and Pinky!

Cons of Working as a Vet Tech

  • Long Hours and Low Pay - I used to work from 6:45 am to closing time. The clinic closed at 6 pm, but we were usually there until at least 7pm - 8pm. Be prepared to work VERY long days! Also, vet techs do not usually get paid very much. You'll probably be looking at an income not much greater than $25,000 a year. Maybe $30,000+ if you're very experienced and educated and are able to get a nice title somewhere. 
  • Euthanasia - Are you willing to assist in helping animals cross the rainbow bridge? For many people, the sheer thought of this alone might scare them away from the job. You must be able to understand that you are helping them. If you let the passing of pets bother you too much, it affects your whole team.
  • Gross Stuff - Ok, admittedly I would love to put this under the pros section... Some of it anyways - I'll spare you the details. Your going to have to poke animals with needles and do things to them that they aren't going to like. I know that this bothers some people. And don't forget about all the urine, feces, and vomit you'll probably be cleaning up. If you have a weak stomach, you may want to reconsider this occupation.
  • Dangerous - Working as a vet tech can be a dangerous job sometimes. You can never be too cocky when handling animals. It's easy to be bitten or scratched. Not to mention you may be exposed to harmful zoonotic diseases. 

Kit Kat
There were times when I became so frustrated with my work that I reconsidered working as a vet tech. I asked myself if it was worth the pay. I thought about returning to school and working in the human medical field. This was during my most recent pregnancy.

I went to one of my doctor appointments at the OBGYN and noticed how the medical assistants that worked there seemed so bland and boring. (I have met tons on nice nurses, however!) They didn't engage in any sort of conversation with me and I never saw them smile. I wasn't like these monotonous assistants when I went to greet clients and their pets where I worked.

That's when I knew I couldn't change careers. Working as a veterinary technician is a perfect fit for me. I would rather work doing something that I love and get paid less than working in an occupation that didn't suit me.

28 comments:

  1. its nice to be in a job that you love,me I don't love my job but I don't mind it but I do love the hours as it meeans I home alot with Speedy and have time to do my hobbies

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think that's probably important and Speedy I'm sure is appreciative :)

      Delete
  2. It is very important to work at a job that you love!! It shows in the work that you do...and the animals can tell too! xo Jeanne, Chloe and LadyBug

    ReplyDelete
  3. We think you all do a great job and we are always thankful. Have a super Sunday.
    Best wishes Molly

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a great overview of this career! Thank goodness there are people like you to nurture and care for our pets (and us) at such vulnerable times. This is important work.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I am going to share this with my step-daughter who is going to school to be a vet tech. Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh how cool! Good luck to her, she will probably love it!

      Delete
  6. Our Lady says she has spent too many hours in the vet clinic to think any job there is rosy and not gross. She salutes the people who do it well!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Those are some mighty good points. I never worked as a vet tech, but sure know a lot of people that have and also know a lot of vets so know all the ins and outs. It is hard work but so rewarding when you can help an animal.

    ReplyDelete
  8. We're so glad you've found the perfect job for you! We know just how hard you guys work, and we appreciate it!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Woof! Woof! Very Nice. Golden Thanks for sharing.We LOVE all the vet n vet tech, lots of studying for sure. Lots of Golden Woofs, Sugar

    ReplyDelete
  10. We love our vet techs, they are the best! Glad that you love what you do. Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrs.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Another cool thing about being a vet tech is that there are a lot of different places you can work -- zoos, horse hospitals, shelters, aquariums...

    Mom even knows a vet tech who owns her own business going around to barns and doing stuff like x-rays and blood draws and bandage changes for different vets.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I loved working in veterinary clinics. I loved working with the animals, learning different things about medicine and educating people. I did it for 8 years, but in the end switched to a non-clinical job in human healthcare. I switched for the same reason I didn't become a vet- the clients. Don't get me wrong, there are so many great pet owners. But there were also so many who made my job difficult and stressful. I would go home and be so upset about some things.

    I love the job I have now. It incorporates a lot of what I loved working in the vet hospital. I just have to get my pet fix outside of work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would have to agree about the clients. They can be very stressful at times... it's usually just a handful of them. My teacher in college was a DVM and she actually quit practicing at pet hospitals because of the clients. She went to do other things like teach and I think she may work for the USDA now.

      Delete
  13. this is a great article! i would love to be a vet tech, however i was wondering what type of math is involved?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mostly pharmaceutical math. Having a good idea of how to convert standard measurements to metric conversions.

      Delete
  14. Thank you so much for sharing this! I am considering going back to school and am considering being a vet tech even though I've never been great at science and math.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I realize that this post is several years old, but it's a great post. For those thinking of getting the training to become a vet tech this is very helpful.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's just a little over a year old, but thank you! I loved working as a vet tech and hope that I can return to that job one day in the future.

      Delete
  16. Hi, I am coming out of a lay off as a cytotechnologist in human medicine and considering a second career as a vet tech. There aren't any cytotech jobs in my area, and my husband can't relocate. So I am looking at other careers. There is an excellent vet tech program here. I am still a little afraid of the pay cut.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have no idea what a cytotech makes, but I have a feeling it may be a lot more than a vet tech... but job supply always seems to be good, at least where I live in Austin, TX. And it is a fun job.

      Delete
  17. Could you talk a little bit about the stress of the job as far as life/death mistakes? Are you often put in a position to accidentally kill an animal? And how do you handle that?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Of course. We are only human and can certainly make errors. It's very stressful thinking about that. One thing I've noticed that helps is good management. I worked at a place that I believe had poor management and we were severely understaffed and never said no to people that wanted to bring their pets in. I don't think it's a wise decision for any practice to take on more than they can handle at any given time. It means patients might miss treatments or not get the care they need or deserve. If the practice is able to manage things properly and is able to put safety nets in place to prevent mistakes from happening, it makes the employees feel much better about the job that they are doing.

      I hear a lot of people complain that "the vet clinic wouldn't see us" which makes them mad, but if you think of it in these terms they probably have their reasons. I've seen mistakes happen, and I've made some myself. Nothing too serious, but stuff happens. I always told myself "I'm only one person" and just tried to focus on my tasks instead of spreading myself too thin in the hospital.

      Delete
  18. Hello! I am considering moving from teaching to being a vet tech. I know it will be a pay cut, but I think I would enjoy it alot more. I am shadowing a vet tech next week and can't wait. She told me several things about the job (including lab work and surgery aid) that sounded really interesting. I was pre-vet in college until I ran into Calculus, the beast I couldn't defeat. I'm hoping this will be a nice second to the career I initially wanted.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That's awesome! You know, I initially had also wanted to be a teacher, and went to school for it at first but then switched gears to become a vet tech. It is definitely a nice second to being a vet and you may actually get to do more of the fun stuff without all of paperwork and other responsibilities of being the doctor. Good luck!

      Delete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...