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Ultrasonography, or ultrasound technology, is becoming a common diagnostic tool in many veterinary practices. This gives anyone interested in a career in animal medicine many opportunities to use ultrasound machines on a variety of animals. Veterinary technicians and veterinarians perform the ultrasounds. If ultrasound technology and animals greatly interest you, there are different career paths you can choose to take depending on your long-term goals and interests.
Veterinary Technician Ultrasonographer
Get professional experience working with animals in a medical setting. General knowledge of animal medical care is needed to perform and assist in more complex procedures. Start your animal ultrasound technician career by working an entry-level job in a veterinary office.
Go to college to become a registered veterinary technician. Vet techs are hired to prep animals for and assist during ultrasound procedures.
Get trained to use the ultrasound equipment by attend training seminars and classes to learn how to operate the ultrasound machine. Another option for training is to get a job at a veterinary practice that has an ultrasound machine to learn from the vet and other technicians. Once trained you may be asked to perform the ultrasounds on animals yourself.
Get a degree in veterinary medicine. Only licensed veterinarians review the results to make an official diagnosis and treatment plan.
Attend ultrasonography seminars and take courses in radiology. This will give you the experience and knowledge base to begin to use the equipment.
Become an American College of Veterinary Radiolology (ACVR) board certified veterinary radiologist to specialize in radiological medicine for animals. Although any veterinarian can perform ultrasounds, those that specialize in radiology technology and are certified by the ACVR have more training and expertise in the field. ACVR veterinarians have completed a radiology residency program and passed an extensive exam.
Lynn Anders has more than 15 years of professional experience working as a zookeeper, wildlife/environmental/conservation educator and in nonprofit pet rescue. Writing since 2007, her work has appeared on various websites, covering pet-related, environmental, financial and parenting topics. Anders has a Bachelor of Arts in environmental studies and biology from California State University, Sacramento.