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Career and Education Opportunities for Animal Attendants in Tampa, Florida

Tampa, Florida provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for animal attendants. Currently, 890 people work as animal attendants in Florida. This is expected to grow by 14% to about 1,020 people by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for animal attendants are expected to grow by about 9.1%. Animal attendants generally handle animals for the purpose of investigations of mistreatment, or control of abandoned, dangerous, or unattended animals.

Animal attendants earn approximately $15 per hour or $31,500 annually on average in Florida. Nationally they average about $14 per hour or $30,310 yearly. Jobs in this field include: animal park code enforcement officer, animal cop, and animal rescuer.

The Tampa area is home to fifty-four schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Tampa where you can get a degree as an animal attendant. Given that the most common education level for animal attendants is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time training to become an animal attendant if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Animal Attendant

Animal Attendant video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, animal attendants handle animals for the purpose of investigations of mistreatment, or control of abandoned, dangerous, or unattended animals.

Animal attendants write reports of efforts, and maintain files of impoundments and dispositions of animals. They also remove captured animals from animal-control service vehicles and place animals in shelter cages or other enclosures. Equally important, animal attendants have to answer inquiries from the public concerning animal control operations. They are often called upon to contact animal owners to inform them that their pets are at animal holding facilities. They are expected to educate the public about animal welfare, and animal control laws and rules. Finally, animal attendants get ready for prosecutions pertaining to animal treatment, and give evidence in court.

Every day, animal attendants are expected to be able to articulate ideas and problems. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for animal attendants to euthanize rabid or severely injured animals. They are often called upon to supply animals with food and personal care. They also organize the adoption of unclaimed animals. They are sometimes expected to clean facilities and equipment such as dog pens and animal control trucks. Somewhat less frequently, animal attendants are also expected to train police officers in dog handling and training techniques for tracking and narcotics and bomb detection.

Animal attendants sometimes are asked to get ready for prosecutions pertaining to animal treatment, and give evidence in court. and issue warnings or citations in connection with animal-related offenses, or contact police to report violations and request arrests. And finally, they sometimes have to write reports of efforts, and maintain files of impoundments and dispositions of animals.

Like many other jobs, animal attendants must have exceptional integrity and be reliable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Tampa include:

  • Lifeguard. Monitor recreational areas, such as pools, beaches, or ski slopes to provide assistance and protection to participants.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Animal Attendant Training

St Petersburg College - Clearwater, FL

St Petersburg College, 14025 58th Street North, Clearwater, FL 33760. St Petersburg College is a large college located in Clearwater, Florida. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs and has 26,099 students. St Petersburg College has a bachelor's degree program in Security and Protective Services, Other Specialties which graduated twenty-eight students in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Tampa, Florida

Tampa, Florida
Tampa, Florida photo by Caltrop

Tampa is located in Hillsborough County, Florida. It has a population of over 340,882, which has grown by 12.3% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Tampa, 95, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Tampa are valued at $188,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, six hundred thirty-five new homes were constructed in Tampa, down from 1,008 the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Tampa are health care, educational services, and finance and insurance. For men, it is construction, professional, scientific, and technical services, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 25.4% of Tampa residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 9.2%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Tampa is 11.8%, which is greater than Florida's average of 11.3%.

The percentage of Tampa residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 41.8%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. Abundant Life Assembly of God Church, Florida Tampa Mission and Most Holy Redeemer Church are among the churches located in Tampa. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the United Methodist Church.

Tampa is home to the Parkers Railroad Station and the Drew Station Railroad Station as well as Ybor City Museum State Park and American Legion Playground. Shopping centers in the area include Northgate Shopping Center, Old Hyde Park Village Shopping Center and Benttree Plaza Shopping Center. Visitors to Tampa can choose from Backstage Restaurant & Lounge, Baymont Tampa Busch Gardens and Budget Inn for temporary stays in the area.