Veterinary technologists and technicians perform medical tests under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian to assist in diagnosing the injuries and illnesses of animals.
Veterinary technologists and technicians work in private clinics, laboratories, and animal hospitals. Their jobs may be physically or emotionally demanding. Many work evenings, weekends, or holidays.
How to Become a Veterinary Technologist or Technician
Veterinary technologists and technicians must complete a postsecondary program in veterinary technology. Technologists need a 4-year bachelor’s degree, and technicians need a 2-year associate’s degree. Typically, both technologists and technicians must take a credentialing exam and must become registered, licensed, or certified, depending on the requirements of the state in which they work.
Employment of veterinary technologists and technicians is projected to grow 19 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than the average for all occupations. Employment will grow as more veterinarians utilize technicians and technologists to do general care and lab work, and as they continue to replace lower skilled veterinary assistants.
Job Trends for Veterinary Technologists and Technicians
This occupation supported 84,800 jobs in 2012 and 95,600 jobs in 2014, reflecting an increase of 12.7%. In 2012, this occupation was projected to increase by 29.5% in 2022 to 109,800 jobs. As of 2014, to keep pace with prediction, the expected number of jobs was 89,800, compared with an observed value of 95,600, 6.5% higher than expected. This indicates current employment trends are much better than the 2012 trend within this occupation. In 2014, this occupation was projected to increase by 21.2% in 2024 to 113,600 jobs. Linear extrapolation of the 2012 projection for 2022 results in an expected number of 114,800 jobs for 2024, 1.1% higher than the 2014 projection for 2024. This indicates expectations for future employment trends are about on track with the 2012 trend within this occupation.