Becoming a veterinarian assistant is a huge responsibility that involves taking care of animals, before and after treatment. In this article a few of the duties of a veterinarian assistant are discussed…
Animals also have health care providers known as veterinarians or simply vets. These doctors work towards keeping the animals in good health and free from disorders. They have pet clinics, where they are assisted by persons called veterinarian assistants. Some of the veterinarian assistant duties is to interact with the animals and their owners regarding care, grooming and vaccines, etc. If you are passionate about working for animals, then this is the right career for you.
Veterinarian Assistant Job Description
The primary job of a veterinarian assistant is to look after the animals entrusted to his care. Right from restraining the pet for examination to taking care of it post treatment, the veterinarian assistant has a number of duties to perform.
- In order to qualify as an assistant veterinarian, you must complete a bachelor’s degree program in any science stream, particularly veterinary science. The degree program can take approximately four years for completion, after which you can study further for the master’s degree. You can then opt for a specialization in the master’s program of veterinary medicine stream.
- Most of the organizations prefer experienced candidates, so you can work as a volunteer in pet stores, animal shelters, zoos, etc. Volunteering at the local Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) is also considered as a credit while hiring veterinarian assistants. After you have gained considerable experience, you can join any vet’s clinic as an intern.
- One of the primary veterinarian assistant duties is to check out the details about the animal, from its owner. The details regarding the problem the animal is suffering from, previous medical history, taking the animal’s temperature and observing the signs exhibited by the animal and noting the behavior of the animal. The assistant also maintain the health record for review by the chief veterinarian.
- Before the chief veterinarian arrives, the assistant may perform simple tests like X rays or drawing blood and assist in other lab related works. For this the veterinary assistant should be well equipped and knowledgeable.
- Holding the animal from moving during examinations or while administering vaccines, obtaining samples like ear swabs, blood, fecal and urine samples for laboratory tests etc. are some other important duties performed by an assistant veterinarian. He may also hand medical instruments to the chief doctor, during an examination or procedure.
- Feeding the animal, watering, monitoring the health of the animal during an overnight stay is also done by the assistant. Exercising the pet and looking after its needs are some other tasks.
- Cleaning and sanitizing the cage in which the animal has been kept, trimming the nails, cleaning, brushing and bathing etc. are some other preliminary duties overtaken by an assistant veterinarian.
- At times, the job of an assistant veterinarian can be stressful, especially in emergency situations and where an ill animal may need to be put to sleep. The assistant veterinarian must keep his cool and ensure that the animal does not suffer any pain and also offer comfort and solace to the pet owner.
- Sometimes the veterinary doctor may require his assistance during a surgery, for handing tools, monitoring the health of the animal during the operation etc. Post surgery, he may go about the tasks of administering medicines, bandaging the wound and ensuring it is disinfected, and also carry out other duties.
- Apart from these duties, the veterinary assistant also performs other tasks like opening the clinic, taking appointments and scheduling them accordingly and answering the phone. He also maintains clerical records of the clients, processes paperwork, handling bills etc. When need arises, the assistant may also manage the front office.
- The average assistant veterinarian salary is about USD 28,000 and is determined by factors like location of the clinic, work timing (full-time or part-time) and the experience in the related field.
If you have true passion for animals and want to do something for their well-being, then choose this assistant veterinarian as your career. All the best!