Though many might consider this a major exaggeration, pet owners consider animal hospitals and clinics to be of the same importance as human healthcare facilities.
They also know how important it is to be able to rely on a worker in these facilities, on someone who is there to understand and share a kind word.
More often than not a visit to the vet is a stressful situation for both pets and their humans, which is why a veterinary technician plays a significant role in any clinic or animal hospital.
So if you’re capable of offering this kind of support to other people, while taking care of animals too, then the profession of a veterinary technician might be the right one for you.
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Job Description and Duties of a Vet Technician in Michigan
As a veterinary technician in Michigan, you’re definitely going to be expected to perform various jobs related not just to the animals, but a bunch of administrative jobs like scheduling appointments, keeping and updating records, cooperating with other veterinary facilities among many others.
Besides all this, your duties will be to tend animals and perform all of the less important tasks that go with making the animals better.
These tasks are keeping animals clean, sterilizing operating rooms, as well a the equipment before and after surgeries and lab work.
Here are some of the things you’ll perform and, more importantly, learn how to do:
- applying anethesia
- keeping records of patients
- working in a lab
- taking x-rays
- restraining and helping with animals
- assisting during surgeries
Basically, as a veterinary technician, you’ll have more obligations than most people would ever think a vet technician has!
How to Become One?
In order to become a vet technician, the first and most essential thing you’ll need is an Associate’s of Applied Science degree in Veterinary Technology.
You might not need this degree to work in some clinics but if you want a serious career in veterinary field, a degree from an accredited program is a necessity.
The next thing you’ll need to do is take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) , which is an exam administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards, as well as the Michigan Veterinary Technician examination.
Only if you pass these tests, you can work as a registered vet technician in Michigan.
And don’t forget you can take the VTNE exam only if you’ve graduated from an accredited program for vet technicians!
Education Required for a Vet Technician in Michigan
You already know the importance of graduating from an accredited veterinary technician program.
For Michigan, this means that you can enroll in any of the seven that exist in this state, and they all have full accreditation.
Full accreditation means that the program is fully accredited because it has met all the criteria of the CVTEA.
There are also additional nine accredited programs available through various online institutions.
Now, as for the actual curriculum when you start your program, it’s mostly science focused, given the fact that, well, veterinary field is a science.
Some of your courses will be the following:
- Anatomy and physiology
- Veterinary math
- Veterinary math
- Courses related to individual animals
Most colleges have on-campus laboratories where you can practice working with real animals under the supervision of your instructors, and this is known as an on-campus internship.
Your final semester will be an off-campus internship, or an externship at a real clinic or a hospital, where you’ll work under the supervision of a professional vet and learn what it’s like to be a veterinary technician on a day-to-day basis.
Here are some of the animal facilities in Michigan where you can seek to complete your externship:
- Mid-Michigan Veterinary Hospital
- Blue Pearl Veterinary Partners
- Countryside Veterinary Hospital
- Cahill Veterinary Hospital
- Dunckel Veterinary Hospital
- Gaide Veterinary Hospital
Tuition and Financial Aid
Sometimes tuition can be quite expensive, but it’s usually not so for veterinary technicians. Tuition varies greatly depending on the college in Michigan you opt for.
Generally speaking, though, for your entire education, that can last anywhere from 18 months to two years, sometimes even three, you’ll have to cash out somewhere between $6,000 and $30,000 for tuition fees.
Don’t forget to add about $2,000 to $3,000 for books and lab supplies. Living and transportation expenses are not included in this estimate.
As for financial aid, visit the websites of each of the schools: most of the traditional college financial aids are available to students attending the vet tech programs.
Licensing and Certification
You’ve graduated from an accredited program, now what?
Well, now you’ll have to take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) as this is the case in most states in America, if you want to work as a licensed veterinary technician.
This is an exam regulated by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards.
Don’t let your guard down just because you’ve graduated: this exam lasts three hours, has 150 questions and costs $300. Only those who graduated from an accredited program can take this test.
After this, you’ll be eligible to take the Michigan Veterinary Technician examination, which is also necessary if you want to work as a registered technician.
Getting a Job in Michigan
Finally, you’re done with all your exams and educational programs. What next?
Congrats, the only thing left to do is find your first job. This shouldn’t be a difficult adventure, though, because veterinary technicians are wanted in many animal hospitals and clinics, so you won’t have a hard time finding work.
Here are some of your potential employers in Michigan, that may offer you a job:
- Michigan Veterinary Medical Association (MVMA)
- VCA (Veterinary Centers of America)
- 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
Salaries for Vet Technicians in Michigan
As for salaries vet technicians get – they’re not half bad either, and in the future, they’re going to get higher, so no reason to worry.
With more and more pet owners every year, being a vet technician is a job with a good perspective as they’re becoming increasingly wanted.
Here’s what we know: namely, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show their employments is expected to grow by a whopping 30% per year through 2022.
Take a look at the average vet technician salaries in Michigan.
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As an animal lover, which we’re sure you are since you want a career in veterinary field, you should know that apart from the great sides of spending your days with animals, there are downsides to it, like seeing pets with injuries, or illnesses, or worst of all having to perform euthanasia on them.
So it is important to keep in mind that this job is not all pets and hugs.
You should also remember you’ll be expected to perform a whole bunch of things that require physical capabilities and strength like standing for hours or carrying heavy animals.
However, we’re sure that with the certificate you get after graduating and passing all your exams, you’ll also get the self-esteem and self-confidence you need to perform one of the most important jobs.