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Career and Education Opportunities for Veterinarian Technicians in Vancouver, Washington

Veterinarian technician career and educational opportunities abound in Vancouver, Washington. There are currently 1,270 jobs for veterinarian technicians in Washington and this is projected to grow by 29% to 1,640 jobs by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for veterinarian technicians, which sees this job pool growing by about 35.8% over the next eight years. Veterinarian technicians generally perform medical tests in a laboratory environment for use in the treatment and diagnosis of diseases in animals.

The income of a veterinarian technician is about $14 per hour or $29,440 yearly on average in Washington. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $13 per hour or $28,900 yearly on average. Veterinarian technicians earn less than people working in the category of Veterinary generally in Washington and less than people in the Veterinary category nationally. People working as veterinarian technicians can fill a number of jobs, such as: anesthesia veterinary technician, veterinary laboratory technician , and medical technologist.

The Vancouver area is home to forty-eight schools of higher education, including two within twenty-five miles of Vancouver where you can get a degree as a veterinarian technician. Given that the most common education level for veterinarian technicians is an Associate's, or other 2-year degree, you can expect to spend about two years training to become a veterinarian technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Veterinarian Technician

Veterinarian Technician video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, veterinarian technicians perform medical tests in a laboratory environment for use in the treatment and diagnosis of diseases in animals. They also prepare vaccines and serums for prevention of diseases.

Veterinarian technicians observe the behavior and state of animals, and monitor their clinical symptoms. They also ready and administer medications, vaccines and treatments, as prescribed by veterinarians. Equally important, veterinarian technicians have to furnish assistance with animal euthanasia and the disposal of remains. They are often called upon to take animals into treatment areas, and assist with physical examinations by performing such duties as obtaining temperature and respiration data. They are expected to maintain instruments and machinery to insure proper working condition. Finally, veterinarian technicians administer emergency first aid.

Every day, veterinarian technicians are expected to be able to evaluate problems as they arise. They need to listen to and understand others in meetings.

It is important for veterinarian technicians to monitor medical supplies and place orders when inventory is low. They are often called upon to supervise and train veterinary students and other staff members. They also dress and suture wounds, and apply splints and other protective devices. They are sometimes expected to perform dental work such as cleaning and extracting teeth. Somewhat less frequently, veterinarian technicians are also expected to perform dental work such as cleaning and extracting teeth.

Veterinarian technicians sometimes are asked to take and design diagnostic radiographs, using x-ray equipment. They also have to be able to administer anesthesia to animals, under the direction of a veterinarian, and monitor animals' responses to anesthetics so that dosages can be adjusted And finally, they sometimes have to collect and label samples for laboratory testing or microscopic examination.

Like many other jobs, veterinarian technicians must have exceptional integrity and be reliable.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Veterinarian Technician Training

Portland Community College - Portland, OR

Portland Community College, 12000 SW 49th Avenue, Portland, OR 97219-7132. Portland Community College is a large college located in Portland, Oregon. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 26,657 students. Portland Community College has an associate's degree program in Veterinary/Animal Health Technology/Technician & Veterinary Assistant which graduated nineteen students in 2008.

Apollo College-Portland Inc - Portland, OR

Apollo College-Portland Inc, 2004 Lloyd Center, 3rd Floor, Portland, OR 97232-1309. Apollo College-Portland Inc is a small college located in Portland, Oregon. It is a private for-profit school with primarily 2-year programs. It has 1,209 students and an admission rate of 98%. Apollo College-Portland Inc has a one to two year program in Veterinary/Animal Health Technology/Technician & Veterinary Assistant which graduated 119 students in 2008.


Assistant Laboratory Animal Technician: The technician certification designations of ALAT, LAT, and LATG are well known and widely used throughout the varied fields of laboratory animal care.

For more information, see the American Association for Laboratory Animal Science website.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Vancouver, Washington

Vancouver, Washington
Vancouver, Washington photo by Matthiasb

Vancouver is located in Clark County, Washington. It has a population of over 163,186, which has grown by 13.7% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Vancouver, 98, is near the national average. New single-family homes in Vancouver are priced at $95,700 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, two hundred eighty new homes were built in Vancouver, down from four hundred twenty the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Vancouver are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, computer and electronic products, and accommodation and food services. The average travel time to work is about 23 minutes. More than 21.7% of Vancouver residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 7.4%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Vancouver is 7.8%, which is less than Washington's average of 8.7%.

The percentage of Vancouver residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 27.9%, is less than both the national and state average. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Vancouver is home to the Vancouver Square and the Vancouver Plaza as well as Leverich Park and Wintler Park. Shopping malls in the area include Arbours Shopping Center, Millport Shopping Center and Vancouver Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Vancouver can choose from Comfort Suites Vancouver, Homewood Suites Portland-Vancouver and Best Western Hotel and Suites Vacouver Mall Dr for temporary stays in the area.