How to Become a Veterinary Technician in Ohio

Each day, pet ownership in America increases which leads to a rapid development in the veterinary medicine area.

That, in itself, means that the necessity for educated and talented veterinary technicians exists more and more.

The number of people interested in veterinary science and medicine is, surprisingly, lower than the amount of work in veterinary clinics and hospitals, and so there’s always work for those who want to learn and do.

That’s the reason why, nowadays, veterinarians are trying to raise awareness of how important animal welfare is.

If you’ve opted for a career in veterinary profession, you won’t have difficulties finding a job, but let’s see what it is you’ll need to do to become one first.

Job Description and Duties of a Vet Technician in Ohio

As a vet technician in Ohio, you’ll be in charge of helping the veterinarian constantly, of making the pet owners feel welcome and understood and finally, and most impotantly, of helping the animals as much as is within your power.

This, in practice, means, you’ll be in charge of the following chores and tasks:

  • providing treatment for routine problems
  • recording temperature, pulse and respiration
  • assisting the veterinarian with physical exams
  • preparing animals and equipment for surgery
  • assisting with surgeries and other medical procedures
  • performing anesthesia
  • collecting blood, urine or stool samples
  • processing laboratory tests
  • developing radiographs and x-rays
  • administration of medications
  • dressing wounds
  • sterilizing laboratory and surgical equipment
  • vaccinating animals
  • observing the habits and condition of animals

Then there are the least pleasant tasks of cleaning after the animals and performing euthanasia.

Now that you’re familiar with your general duties as a vet technician, let’s take a look at the particular steps you have to take in order to become one.

How to Become One?

Let’s list all of your steps in order first, to make it easier for you.

If you plan on becoming a vet technician in Ohio, you will have to graduate at an accredited vet technology program and earn an Associate’s of Applied Science degree in Veterinary Technology.

Though not obliged by law to do this, your chances of working at a serious clinic are minor without proper education and experience.

If you want to work as a licensed and registered veterinary technician, you’ll have to attend a veterinary technology program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association’s Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CVTEA).

Ohio has as many as ten colleges that have fully accredited veterinary technology programs.

Once you’ve graduated, you’ll have to take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE), an exam required in order to become a licensed Ohio veterinary technician.

Education Required for a Vet Technician in Ohio

Naturally, every school has its own prerequisites  that you’ll have to complete before you enroll.

They vary greatly in terms of those prerequisites and you’ll have to get informed about the particular prerequisites for the college you want to go to.

Generally speaking, most of them require a C average or better in high school and many of them require attending some basic courses after high school like biology, chemistry, English and math before you begin with your core subjects.

When the core subjects are concerned, they’ll be more science-focused like the following, which are offered in most programs regardless of the particular college you attend:

  • Biology and Chemistry
  • Clinical Procedures
  • Laboratory Animal Science
  • Surgical Procedures
  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Large and Small Animal Medicine
  • Veterinary Hospital Management
  • Animal Nutrition
  • Animal Disease and Pathology
  • Pharmacology and Toxicology
  • Veterinary Imaging
  • Anesthesiology
  • Dentistry
  • Emergency and Critical Care

Most of these colleges have their own labs where you can learn what an internship is, while working under your supervisors.

You can also choose what you want to specialize in, and here are just some of your options:

  • Zoological and Exotic Animal Medicine
  • Internal Medicine
  • Dental Technician
  • Equine Medicine
  • Behavior Modification
  • American Association of Zoo Keepers
  • Emergency and critical care nursing
  • Surgery and Anesthetist

Then you will venture into an out-of-campus internship that will take place during your final semester, which means you’ll have to work in an actual veterinary clinic, supervised by a veterinarian.

This is where you’ll put all your theoretical knowledge into practice.

Tuition and Financial Aid

Tuition also varies greatly depending on the school you’re going to, but generally speaking, it costs somewhere between of $22,000 and $32,000 – all this including books, fees, and supplies.

You should really check the website of the college you’re thinking of enrolling into for more detailed information about the tuition.

As for financial aid, all the traditional types of financial aid that are available to students across America are also available to students in Ohio, and you can start with the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

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Licensing and Certification

We’ve already prepared you for the fact that when you’re done educating yourself, you’re still not done with exams!

Here are several next steps you have to take before you’re done:

The first thing is you’ll have to take the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE), an exam administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards.

It is necessary that you’ve graduated from an accredited veterinary technology program, because if your program isn’t accredited – you can’t take this test.

Don’t expect a piece-of-cake exam, because it takes three hours to complete it, it has over 150 questions and costs 300$.

Luckily for you, this will be the end of your exams, and you will be eligible to start working as a registered veterinary technician.

Your next task will be to complete both an Ohio criminal background check and an FBI criminal background check, of which the results have to be forwarded to the Ohio Board.

In the end, your only remaining job will be to renew your license regularly by completing ten hours of board approved continuing education in order to keep your license current.

Getting a Job in Ohio

Congratulations! You’ve made it this far. Now it’s time to find your first job.

This shouldn’t be too complicated or difficult because veterinary technicians, and generally, workers in animal welfare are wanted by a growing number of animal hospitals, private clinics, zoos and animal shelters.

Here’s where you can find a job as a veterinary technician in Ohio:

Salaries for Vet Technicians in Ohio

Though you may not be satisfied with the paycheck you get at the end of a long day, try looking at it this way: there’s a bright future for you as a vet technician in Ohio, even though it doesn’t look that way at the beginning.

According to the the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) the employment of workers in animal healthcare is expected to grow by a whopping 30% per year through 2022.

Here are current average salaries of vet technicians across Ohio.

LocationAvg. Annual Salary
Cuyahoga Falls,OH$28,465

Final Words

Many think that the job of a veterinary technician is easy and not demanding at all, and that the main job of one is to greet clients and make phone calls.

But these are just two of their easiest duties! So don’t be discouraged by how people perceive this job.

Make no mistake, if you watch just one working day of a veterinary technician you won’t believe all the difficult tasks yourself, and the physical and mental abilities they have to posses.

Veterinary technicians are essential in animal welfare and seriously involved in the curing process of wounded or ill animals, so if you’ve opted for this profession, know that it’s not only noble, but important too.

USA How to Become a Vet Tech by State