How to Become a Certified Vet Tech
Published on November 4, 2019 by arothstein
Do you have dreams of becoming a certified vet tech? One way animal lovers can pursue their goal of caring for animals as their career is to take classes through an accredited Veterinary Technician program like at Broadview University. Here, you’ll earn your degree to work as a vet tech. The duties and services a vet tech provides are:
- Examines animals
- Administers emergency first aid
- Collects samples
- Performs diagnostic tests
Vet techs have to be available to care for animals that are recovering from surgical procedures, are critically sick, or have severe injuries. Vet techs must also be able to manage hectic work schedules on top of their personal lives.
What’s Involved in a Vet Tech Program?
A future vet tech must complete an accredited program and earn an Associate’s degree. After this, the vet tech in training works under the supervision of an attending veterinarian.
Some common lessons in veterinary technology programs are:
- Animal Anatomy
- Animal Restraint
- Exam Room Procedures
- Lab Procedures
- Office Etiquette and Hospital Procedures
- Small Animal Nursing
- Surgical Nursing and Assisting
Vocational and Technical Schools with Vet Tech Programs
First of all, no matter where you go most tech programs at vocational and technical schools are career-ready. For example, a vocational school offers a variety of programs that are popular with professionals. Vocational schools design their programs to make it easier for students to earn their degree while they work.
A lot of vet tech schools offer different training programs and career paths for students. Some schools provide continuing education and career development courses.
Where Do Certified Vet Techs Work?
Certified vet techs most commonly work in private veterinary practices. Every veterinarian around the country needs assistance from qualified vet techs, so there are always excellent job opportunities available.
Emergency Veterinary Clinics
Emergency veterinary clinics also need certified veterinary technicians. As a result, certified vet techs must be willing to put in long hours and can handle more extreme cases. Because of the clinic’s hours, you may be called in to assist with emergency cases 24 hours a day.
Shelters always need certified vet techs to care for incoming animals and to conduct periodic examinations to ensure that the animals are well cared for. Animal shelters are also a great place to volunteer while you are in school to become a certified vet tech.
Zoos and Animal Sanctuaries
One of the most competitive settings in which a vet tech can work is a zoo. Zoo vet techs assist veterinarians with routine examinations and emergency care for animals housed in zoos. Additionally, research labs also hire vet techs to ensure that the animals in the labs are being cared for humanely.
The Work Environment of a Certified Vet Tech
The working environment for a vet tech is very similar to what you find in a doctor’s practice. The front desk staff greets clients and their pets when they arrive. The waiting areas are clean and spacious enough to give each pet and its owner some space, which keeps animals separated and helps to calm them.
The vet tech is also responsible for maintaining examination rooms, surgical suites, and kennel areas. The veterinary technician keeps the examining rooms clean and disinfects them between patient exams. Veterinary technicians must also keep all the surgical tools and equipment clean and germ-free.
Following surgeries, a certified vet tech collects all the surgical instruments that disinfects them. Afterwards, vet tech prepares the surgery for the next patient scheduled for a procedure.
How a Certified Vet Tech Communicates with Others
Interpersonal communication skills are vital in a veterinary practice. The vet tech must have excellent communication skills to talk to veterinarians, colleagues, and pet owners. Furthermore, it is important to have excellent communication between veterinarians, technicians, and staff to create a great client experience.
Communicating with Veterinarians
A tension-free working environment helps the veterinary practice run more smoothly and aids in providing the highest quality of care for patients.
The veterinarian’s instructions must be followed by the staff caring for animals at their practice. Because of this, the vet tech must understand all instructions regarding medications and care for the animals. It’s the responsibility of the vet tech to repeat back instructions if they aren’t clear.
Communication with Colleagues
Additionally, working in a veterinary practice means you’ll have to get along with people of varying personalities. Everyone won’t always agree about work-related issues. Still, it’s essential for the veterinarians in charge of the practice to see that they have a team that can work well together under the most stressful situations.
Be a Team Player
Excellent team players are sensitive to the needs and limitations of their co-workers. When someone is having a stressful day, pitching in and helping where needed can result in a positive outcome.
Show Appreciation for Your Team
Showing interest in the work of other team members lets them know they’re appreciated. It’s essential to handle constructive criticism gracefully and be open to accepting new ideas.
Be Open to Growth
It’s not easy for anyone to admit to mistakes, but there’s no room for error when caring for animals. Being honest with oneself about any limitations will help everyone and can prevent a stressful occurrence.
How a Certified Vet Tech Communicates with Pet Owners
For most people, pets are family and deserve the same consideration as humans in their families. For that reason, pet parents have a strong emotional attachment to their pets. This is also why it is important for a vet tech to communicate effectively with them.
The components to effectively communicating with pet parents include engaging the pet owner in the care of their cat or dog. For example, the vet tech should get them to divulge as many details as possible that may help in their pet’s care.
Encouraging Owners to Ask the Right Questions
The vet tech also encourages the owner to ask questions and provide the details they need to make informed decisions about their pet’s care. Through this, the vet tech picks up on the type of person the pet owner is. For example, some pet owners are detail-oriented and want to know about as many options as possible. By contrast, some pet parents want to know how to get the best results for their pet and want practical and brief explanations about treatment options, food choices, training, or grooming.
How a Certified Vet Tech Informs Pet Owners
Some pet owners understand information more easily when visual aids are involved, while others prefer detailed information that they can discuss with the vet tech. Some pet parents get angry or confrontational when their pet is ill or injured. Because of this, the vet tech must always be professional and informed of the pet owner’s feelings. Effective forms of communication make these scenarios easier for everyone, especially the pet.
Want to Learn More?
Did learning about how to become a certified vet tech interest you? Ready to start a program to become a veterinary technician? With an associate degree in veterinary technology, you’ll gain the knowledge and skills you need to start an entry-level career as a veterinary technician. Broadview University has been part of the community for more than 40 years, so we’ve developed connections that can help move your career forward. After completing our accredited degree program, you’ll be eligible to sit for the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). Passing the VTNE allows you to become a Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT), a designation that will give you a competitive advantage when you enter the job market.
Contact us today to learn more about becoming a veterinary technician and working in veterinary technology.
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