The Pros and Cons of Becoming a Vet Tech

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Are you interested in becoming a vet tech, but want to know more about the basic pros and cons behind choosing this career? Each person relates to aspects of the job in a different way, but hopefully this article can give you a general idea about what to expect if you decide to become a veterinary technician.

Pros:

  • You get to work with animals. Of course, if you don’t like animals, then this is a downside, but why would you even consider being a vet tech if that was the case! Vet techs get to interact with animals and increase the quality of their lives on a daily basis. This job is a great fit for an animal lover.
  • Vet techs are in high demand. The profession is actually relatively new to the field of veterinary medicine. With more people willing to spend for quality pet care, vets are in dire need of qualified vet techs who can help their practice evolve and grow. It won’t be hard for you to find a job as a licensed vet tech – some experts estimate that there are 5 open positions for every 1 graduate!
  • Never a dull moment. I’ve spoken with vet techs who have worked for decades in the profession and love how the job constantly challenges them and presents new and unique situations every day. If the thought of sitting at a desk bores you to tears, you’ll love working on your feet in a fast-paced environment as a veterinary technician.

Cons:

  • Low salary. One of the biggest concerns of veterinary techs is the low salaries that seem to be commonplace throughout the profession. In 2008 the mean annual salary was around $30,000. There is not much room for advancement as a tech, unless you move into a management position. Techs with lots of experience tend to max out at around $20-22/hour.
  • Hazardous working conditions. If you become a veterinary tech, you need to understand that you’ll be working with some animals that aren’t very friendly. You’ll get scratched and bitten often, and you’ll be exposed to urine, feces, blood, and vomit on a daily basis. If you can’t stomach these kind of working conditions, this is not the career for you.
  • Heartbreak. Another inevitability you’ll run into as a tech are the heartbreaking cases. Animals with terminal illnesses will have to be euthanized, and you’ll see a lot of pain and suffering in general. Of course you can take solace in the fact that you are doing the best you can to help your patients, but when it comes down to it, this job isn’t always glamorous.

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