Vet techs (veterinary technicians/technologists) assist veterinarians in diagnosing and treating animals in zoos, private clinics, animal hospitals, research facilities, or wildlife sanctuaries. We cheekily tip our hat to them.
What they do: Vet techs obtain medical history, maintain records, establish vital signs, administer vaccines, trim nails, clean teeth and ears, collect samples, prepare and analyse samples, clean, dress and bandage wounds, place intravenous catheters, calculate dosages and administer medications orally or by injection, and monitor and tend to sick animals.
What they don’t do: Play with pets all day.
Educational requirements: Two or three years of a formal training programme at the college level. Vet techs may also need to be licensed in order to work.
Required skills: Well organised, attention to detail, good communication, works well with others, able to operate an X-ray machine and use lab equipment, and skill in handling animals, as they may bite, scratch or try to escape.
Salary: A veterinary technologist/technician can expect to earn an average annual salary of US$19,981-US$38,864, according to PayScale.com, though salary can vary depending on employer and/or size and type of practice.