How to Become a Veterinary Assistant in Michigan

People who like working with animals might consider becoming veterinary assistants and even though it might sound like an easy job, we need to mention that veterinary assistants might face more tasks than you might think.

The veterinary assistants’ task is not only related to helping clients understand that their pet is in good hands but be involved in the process of intervention or surgery, meaning that you will need to do much more than just providing compassion to the animals and their owners.

A good vet assistant provides effective, high-quality care and is always inspired for new knowledge and improvement throughout his/her whole career.

Veterinary Assistant Job Description and Duties in Michigan

Veterinary assistants play an important role due to the fact that their help allows other team members to perform their tasks and responsibilities.

Their more demanding activities involve helping and assisting veterinarians during surgery, collecting and preparing samples for laboratory testing, while minor but not at all less important tasks are documenting and maintaining animal patient records, helping to fill scripts, or cooperate with other veterinary facilities.

So, there are more things that veterinary assistants daily do than most people realize and they deserve more praise.

For an animal lover, dealing with animals and helping them all day might sound like a dream job, but before you decide to become a vet assistant, it is important to understand both the positive and negative sides of this vocation.

Vet assistants must be physically strong to stand a wide range of tasks on a typical day.

He/she needs to find pleasure and fulfillment in the job itself since the vet assistant salary is not quite modest.

On the other hand, there will always be a demand for veterinary assistants worldwide, so your chances of getting a job are great.

All in all, it is a fact that veterinary assistants are seriously involved in the medical care and curing process of wounded or ill animals, and getting appropriate education may increase your job prospects and possible salary.

Michigan Vet Assistant Education Requirements

People think that it is great that the state of Michigan does not have a set of education and training requirements for becoming a veterinary assistant.

And it is true that some clinics require a potential employee to have only a high school diploma or GED (General Educational Development).

However, this minimum prerequisite might not be enough for more prominent and recognized clinics whose staff would rather hire someone who has relevant coursework provided by an accredited Veterinary Assistant Program or any kind of license or certification.

The possible veterinary courses organized in Michigan can be found in:

  • Ross Medical Education Center
  • Baker College
  • Ross Medical Education Center

The National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA) was established in 2010 with the aim to support vet assistants and it has created the Approved Veterinary Assistant (AVA) designation with licensed courses available throughout the USA and Canada.

Getting a certificate in the veterinary field through these programs is available to everyone interested and the curriculum includes lectures and training which will prepare them for a successful veterinary assistant job.

It is worth mentioning that the programs focus both on practical and theoretical knowledge and students will learn diagnostic processes, causes of diseases, animal anatomy and physiology, and parasitology, among many other things.

If you are wondering what the approved available options by the NAVTA in Michigan are we are here to help you.

You can either choose an Externship Option in case you are not employed in a vet practice, but are currently looking for employment as a veterinary assistant, Experiential Learner option if you are currently employed Michigan veterinary assistant or Veterinary Assistant Program if you are an individual who works as a Michigan veterinary assistant for at least 20 hours per week in a full-service animal healthcare practice.

When candidates are prepared to take the vet assistant certification test, a code will be issued and that will allow terms and conditions to be set.

A passing score on the AVA exam means that you have succeeded in becoming an approved Michigan veterinary assistant.

Some established vet assistants suggest that if you cannot start working immediately after getting a certification, it is wise to volunteer or intern at various animal shelters so as to gain experience.

Potential Salary Expectations and Job Prospects in Michigan

Everybody is eager to start working after finishing the studies, but that might not be always the case.

However, it is believed that vet assistants would not face that difficulty, being that the need for veterinary assistants is increasing and the places where they can look for a job are various.

They can choose to work at a wildlife refuge, veterinary clinic, zoo, animal shelter, or a nonprofit organization.

When we take into consideration all the responsibilities that a veterinary assistant, we can say that their salaries are not sufficient and satisfactory.

The average annual veterinary assistant salary in Michigan is approximately $ 30 210.

Those cities which have higher standards of living are more likely to pay higher salaries, and when it comes to Michigan, the lowest salary is in Flint which is $28623 while the highest one in Ann Arbor reaching $32062.

Here is the table of annual salaries of veterinary assistants in various cities in the state of Michigan.

LocationAvg. Annual Salary
Grand Rapids$30,105
Sterling Heights$31,516
Ann Arbor$32,062

Potential Veterinary Assistant Employers in Michigan

Veterinary institutions determine the criteria on which they will decide who to employ.

Some of the veterinary assistant employers in Michigan are:

Michigan Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA)


VCA (Veterinary Centers of America)

  • VCA Northeast Cat & Dog Hospital
  • VCA Southwest Michigan Animal Emergency and Referral Center
  • VCA Cherry Bend Animal Hospital
  • VCA Portage Animal Hospital

Vetco Wellness Centers and Vaccination Clinics inside PETCO

  • Located in Sterling Heights Petco
  • Located in Lake Orion Petco
  • Located in Ann Arbor Petco
  • Located in Detroit Petco

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Continuing Education for Veterinary Assistants

These are the most popular and useful resources in Michigan that both aspiring and well-established vet assistants can benefit from.

USA How to Become a Veterinary Assistant by State