Did you know that animal lovers are taking the health and welfare of their pets more seriously than ever?
As a result, there’s now a huge number of vet hospitals and clinics looking for staff like vet assistants.
If you envision yourself as a vet assistant, we encourage you to find go to a school with a quality education.
Then get a certificate upon graduation from the course.
On this page, we provided some of the best schools accredited by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA).
Table of Contents
- 1 How to Find The Best Vet Assistant School?
- 2 Quality Online Veterinary Assistant Schools
- 3 Attending Vet Assistant School Online
- 4 Tuition and Other Costs
- 5 Earning The Vet Assistant Certification
- 6 Additional Helpful Resources
How to Find The Best Vet Assistant School?
There are many factors to consider when determining which vet assistant school is right for you.
- You need to think about your educational needs, desires, and expectations.
- You have to weigh which school will get you to achieve your career goals faster.
It can be daunting, yes.
But with the qualities listed below, we hope you’ll have a much easier time with your school evaluation and decision-making.
The most important thing you have to look at is if the school is approved by NAVTA.
Even if it’s not mandatory to enroll in a non-NAVTA approved program, doing so means you’ll get a higher standard of training.
Plus, you get to qualify for the Approved Veterinary Assistant (AVA) certification examination.
AVA Exam Preparation
Passing the AVA exam means earning an AVA title and certification.
To prepare for it, you need to attend a NAVTA-approved training program, which will equip you with the necessary skills and knowledge.
We encourage you to look at the school’s syllabus to verify if they’ll help you with the preparation.
Before you enroll, make sure you can afford the tuition and other miscellaneous fees.
We urge you to compare the costs over the quality of education you’ll receive between schools.
Look also into the payment options available to you.
You may not know this, but building an educational foundation is just the beginning.
The school has to help you build connections with companies that will hire you upon graduating.
The best connection to make is those with vet hospitals and clinics, as well as reputable vets.
By doing so, you’ll have more chances to gain a profound internship experience than others.
Quality Online Veterinary Assistant Schools
There are many schools you can enroll in to get your vet assistant education.
Here are our top picks you can consider.
Their program provides students with the needed skills to work in a vet hospital or clinic.
The good thing about their program is they offer flexibility in their online education.
That is, they allow you to complete the coursework at your own pace and schedule.
Program completion means you’re now qualified for all the duties expected of vet assistants, such as:
- Prepare animals for surgery
- File medical records
- Restrain anxious pets
- Clean examination rooms and kennels
Later, you’ll also take part in hands-on training at an off-site facility.
There you’ll work under the guidance of an experienced vet or even a vet tech.
The externship usually takes eight weeks to finish, after which you’ll have to work at least 100 hours at a small animal clinic.
At the time of writing, Penn Foster’s tuition amounts to $859 if you pay in full.
But they also have monthly payment places at $59/month, totaling $929.
What’s more, this is a military-friendly school.
So veterans can use their government education benefits to pay for it.
Their program also allows you to complete the program at your own pace.
It consists of 11 stages, and the majority of them can be taken online.
The first to the ninth stage covers the basics such as:
- Animal restraint
- Surgical assisting
- Exam room procedures
- Small animal nursing
In addition, you’ll also learn how to run and manage an animal clinic.
You’ll become familiar with inventory, medical records, and working well with a vet team.
One perk about ABC is that they provide skills useful in building your career, like:
- How to write a resume
- How to prepare for an interview
The tenth stage is where you’ll get the needed hands-on experience through an externship.
It usually takes 20 weeks to complete and will be conducted at one of their partner facilities.
At the 11th stage, you’ll demonstrate the extent of your knowledge through the final exam.
Other than this, they also offer short-term programs where you learn specialized topics.
But take note that they’re only available for those who completed stages one to nine.
The courses cover areas like:
- Dog walking
- Pet fostering
- Pet massage
- Animal nutrition
The tuition is approximately $2,999.
It’s expensive, but you can make use of their payment plans should you choose to study here.
Also, if you’re a military spouse, you can use the government education benefits to pay tuition.
Their program has five modules and takes 26 weeks to finish.
During the studies, you’ll learn topics like:
- Animal anatomy and physiology
- Basic medical terminology
- Animal diseases and treatments
Meanwhile, you’ll also learn skills like:
- Animal grooming
- Updating patient records
- Performing medical calculations
- Phone/conversation etiquette
- Discharge procedures
After completing all modules, you’ll then move on to do a six-week clinical externship.
You get to work for a minimum of 120 hours in an animal hospital or clinic.
And this will give you the chance to practice the skills you’ve learned in the program.
What’s more, you’ll learn more even by just looking at the way experienced vet assistants work.
In terms of tuition, it costs $4,000, with the certification exam fee included.
They also have payment plans available, as well as:
- Employer tuition reimbursement payments
- Government education benefits for military spouses
Attending Vet Assistant School Online
Enrolling in a vet assistant program is a great step towards this rewarding career.
After all, online education is still in the developing process.
It makes them concerned about how schools can effectively teach them things.
For one, these programs teach the concepts online.
For another, you’ll participate in externships for real-life clinical training.
Generally speaking, you can expect to finish your studies in about 1 ½ years.
But this length varies as most online courses are self-paced.
Overall, the main goal is to prepare you to earn your certification.
The following are some of the classes you’ll have to take.
In this line of work, you’ll work with animals, pet owners, and a vet team.
So here, you’ll learn effective communication skills that allow you to build relationships.
It’s a useful skill especially when you have to:
- Console grieving owners
- Use nonverbal communication
Plus, it lessens burnout and emotional fatigue.
Animal Physiology and Anatomy
This class will let you learn:
- How animal bodily systems function
- Ways vets treat medical problems
Administration and Management
Your duties aren’t limited to taking care of animals.
You’ll also have to manage the day-to-day operations of the clinic, like:
- Maintaining patient records
- Basic accounting and other clerical skills
Veterinary Business Practices
The class teaches you how a vet practice is conducted in real life.
That’s why it covers topics such as:
- Pet health insurance
- Scheduling appointments
- Client retainment
- Inventory control
The class gives you a chance to experience the job in real life.
Moreover, it puts your knowledge to the test in a clinical setting.
Tuition and Other Costs
The tuition and fees vary among schools and cannot be exactly stated.
Nonetheless, we added the tuition fees of other vet assistant schools for you.
Earning The Vet Assistant Certification
Enrolling and studying at a vet assistant program is only the first step toward your promising career.
You have to pass and earn your AVA certification, as we mentioned earlier on this page.
So here are the steps for getting your certification.
Find and enroll in a NAVTA-approved vet assistant program.
Complete the set coursework.
Do the externship at a partner vet facility.
Take the AVA exam and pass it.
Renew your designation every two years.
Additional Helpful Resources
Getting your education or certification shouldn’t stop you to pursue more knowledge.
You should take advantage of additional information available to help advance your career.
We placed helpful resources below for you that you can reference from time to time.