How to become a Veterinary Nurse
Were you the kid that always brought home injured animals to look after? Are you passionate about animal welfare? Do you think you could you look after everything from puppies and kittens to snakes and flying-foxes?
A veterinary nurse helps veterinarians take care of animals that are receiving medical, therapeutic and surgical treatments. They would consult with the animal owners to understand what the health issue is, take pathology samples blood or X-rays if necessary and discuss post-treatment care.
Veterinary nurses would also help get animals ready for surgery and other treatments. They would clean and sterilize surgical instruments, monitor anaesthetic during operations and may administer vaccines and medications under supervision.
Aside from technical tasks, a veterinary nurse may perform receptionist work and clerical duties including updating records with the treatments undertaken and medications given out.
To be a veterinary nurse you would need to have an interest in the care and welfare of animals, good problem-solving skills and willingness to work long and irregular hours. You would also need to be physically fit, skilled in handling animals, and patient and sympathetic when you deal with animal owners.
Veterinary nurses are usually employed in private clinics and veterinary hospitals. They typically work a standard number of hours every week. Because most veterinary clinics operate long hours you would be required to work on evenings, weekends and public holidays from time to time.
To work as a veterinary nurse you would need to obtain a VET qualification in veterinary nursing. You could also complete a traineeship in Veterinary Nursing. The job requirements vary depending on the employer but usually a junior secondary school certificate is required.
To look at courses that will help you find a role as a veterinary nurse, check out
The job outlook for veterinary nurses is expected to have strong growth with employment projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations. Employment opportunities are expected to increase as a more affluent population seek veterinary care for their animals especially their pets and companion animals.