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What Is an Animal Technician and How to Become One

Animal Technician

What Is an Animal Technician?

As an animal technician, you care for animals in a laboratory, research facility, or animal hospital. It is your job to monitor and care for each animal to ensure healthy and humane treatment. Your duties involve feeding and watering the animals, cleaning cages and enclosures, and providing basic medical care. The career requires at least an associate degree, although most employers prefer you have a bachelor’s degree in laboratory animal science or veterinary technology. Additional qualifications include animal care experience and technical skills related to veterinary technology. Most states require professional certification and licensing.

How to Become an Animal Technician

Becoming an Animal Technician typically involves earning at least an associates degree in a veterinary technician program from an American Veterinary Medical Association (AMVA) accredited program. Animal Technicians may also earn a four-year bachelor's degree in the same field from an AMVA-accredited program. Either of these programs will include coursework that helps you prepare for a career working one-on-one with animals, which may include learning about vet radiology, laboratory practices, office procedures, small animal anesthesia, and surgery assistance. Most states require that Animal Technicians earn professional certification or registration, and all Animal Technicians must pass a state-administered exam to be able to practice.