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5. CHAPTER. Careers in Small Animal Care. Overview of U.S. Pet Industry. Many households have pets Pets in ~ 58.9 percent of homes in 1996 Dogs in ~ 31.6 percent, cats in ~27.3 percent More cats than dogs (average of 2 per home) Pet expenses over $ 20.3 billion per year

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Chapter

5

CHAPTER

Careers in SmallAnimal Care


Overview of u s pet industry

Overview of U.S. Pet Industry

  • Many households have pets

    • Pets in ~58.9 percent of homes in 1996

    • Dogs in ~31.6 percent, cats in ~27.3 percent

    • More cats than dogs (average of 2 per home)

  • Pet expenses over $20.3 billion per year

  • Pet care just one part of small animal care


Animal breeders technicians

Animal Breeders/Technicians

  • Role

    • Help breed, raise, and market varied animals (livestock, pets, exotics)

  • Education and training

    • Ag and science courses in high school

    • Tech school (9 months or 2 years) or college

  • Exploring the career

    • 4-H, National FFA, volunteering


Animal breeders technicians con t

Animal Breeders/Technicians (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • “Learn and earn,” placement services

    • Growing demand for tech program grads

  • Earnings

    • Vary by education, animals, and area

    • Mean wages (2002): $29,340 annually

  • Work environment

    • Mostly inside, long/irregular hours, danger


Animal caretakers

Animal Caretakers

  • Role

    • Provide day-to-day care for healthy or sick animals

  • Education and training

    • High school diploma with science and health

    • Associate or bachelor degree

  • Exploring the career

    • Volunteering most valuable


Animal caretakers con t

Animal Caretakers (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Advancement depends on job setting

    • Field expected to grow faster than average through 2012

  • Earnings

    • Average wages (2002): $18,750 annually

  • Work environment

    • Indoors or out, heavy lifting, repetition, dirt, danger, long/irregular hours


Animal handlers

Animal Handlers

  • Role

    • Care for, train, and study animals in places like zoos, parks, research labs

  • Education and training

    • High school diploma in sciences

    • Postsecondary education preferable

  • Exploring the career

    • Zoo programs, part-time or after-school jobs


Animal handlers con t

Animal Handlers (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Jobs can be highly competitive

    • Advancement not necessarily a goal

  • Earnings

    • Animal experience often a reward

    • Median salary (2002): $17,080 annually

  • Work environment

    • Indoors and out, dirt and mess, danger of disease and injury


Animal trainers

Animal Trainers

  • Role

    • Teach animals to perform for entertainment, protection, or special-needs support

  • Education and training

    • High school courses in sciences

    • College, special degree may be required

  • Exploring the career

    • Personal study, volunteering, part-time jobs


Animal trainers con t

Animal Trainers (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Advancement through job experience

    • Some jobs limited, competitive

    • Expected to grow faster than average through 2012

  • Earnings

    • Median salary (2002): $22,950 annually

  • Work environment

    • Varies widely, though mostly outdoors with travel, irregular hours, and physical tasks


Aquarists

Aquarists

  • Role

    • Maintain, manage, and support aquariums, oceanariums, and marine research institutes

  • Education and training

    • High school sciences (biology/zoology)

    • Usually bachelor degree in biology

  • Exploring the career

    • Education, strong interest in field, volunteer experience


Aquarists con t

Aquarists (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • More part-time than full-time opportunities

    • Part-time or volunteer jobs to full-time ones

  • Earnings

    • Average salary: $23,000 to $32,000 annually

  • Work environment

    • Indoors or out; water-based, sometimes repetitive tasks; possible travel


Biologists

Biologists

  • Role

    • Study living organisms’ origin, development, anatomy, function, distribution, and other basic principles

  • Education and training

    • Broad high school and undergrad college education

    • Bachelor degree in biology or specialized field

  • Exploring the career

    • Related courses, part-time jobs, research projects


Biologists con t

Biologists (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Many advancement opps, driven by education

    • Growth as fast as average through 2012

  • Earnings

    • Median salary (2002): $60,390 annually

  • Work environment

    • Varies from indoor lab to outdoors with travel; may involve danger or primitive conditions


Naturalists

Naturalists

  • Role

    • Educate the public about the environment and maintain nature on dedicated land

  • Education and training

    • High school sciences, animal care helpful

    • Undergrad degree in environmental, physical, or natural sciences

  • Exploring the career

    • Volunteering at national/state parks or nature centers, conservation programs and organizations


Naturalists con t

Naturalists (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Part-time or seasonal jobs as entry points

    • Outlook fair into first decade of 21st century

  • Earnings

    • Basic pay: From $44,136 to $52,899 annually

  • Work environment

    • Mostly outdoors, often remote sites, long work periods, possibly physical exertion


Pet groomers

Pet Groomers

  • Role

    • Comb, cut, trim, and shape dog and cat fur

  • Education and training

    • High school diploma or GED beneficial

    • Training through work, school, or self-study

  • Exploring the career

    • Personal pet care, youth organizations, part-time or volunteer jobs


Pet groomers con t

Pet Groomers (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Many avenues of advancement

    • Demand faster than average through 2012

  • Earnings

    • Salary: From $12,709 to $27,872 annually

  • Work environment

    • Salons, kennels, pet shops, homes, or vans; 40-hour week with nights/weekends


Veterinarians

Veterinarians

  • Role

    • Diagnoses, controls, and treats animals’ diseases and injuries, advises on proper care

  • Education and training

    • College prep in high school, 4 years undergrad, vet college, license to practice

  • Exploring the career

    • Part-time or volunteer work, extracurricular activities


Veterinarians con t

Veterinarians (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Must complete prescribed program

    • Faster than average growth through 2012

  • Earnings

    • Median salary (2003): $64,750 annually

  • Work environment

    • Hospitals or clinics or farms or ranches, possibly outdoors, long/irregular hours


Veterinary technicians

Veterinary Technicians

  • Role

    • Support and assist veterinarians

  • Education and training

    • High school diploma, 2- to 4-year college-accredited program

  • Exploring the career

    • Animal care experience, paid or volunteer jobs


Veterinary technicians con t

Veterinary Technicians (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Unlimited job opportunities

    • Faster-than-average growth through 2012

  • Earnings

    • Median salary (2003): $23,340 annually

  • Work environment

    • Usually 40-hour week with long and/or weekend hours, emergency work


Zoo and aquarium curators and directors

Zoo and Aquarium Curatorsand Directors

  • Role

    • Coordinate the business affairs of zoos and aquariums

  • Education and training

    • High school sciences, outside school activities

    • Minimum of bachelor degree, more is helpful

  • Exploring the career

    • Self-study, volunteering


Zoo and aquarium curators and directors con t

Zoo and Aquarium Curatorsand Directors (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Need work experience for advancement

    • Outlook less than favorable

  • Earnings

    • Median salary (2002): $35,270 annually

  • Work environment

    • Employing facility, largely inside


Zookeepers

Zookeepers

  • Role

    • Provide zoo animals daily care

  • Education and training

    • High school science, often need 4-year college degree

    • On-the-job training programs or internships

  • Exploring the career

    • Teen volunteer programs, part-time or volunteer jobs


Zookeepers con t

Zookeepers (con’t)

  • Advancement and outlook

    • Intense competition, low turnover

    • Slower-than-average growth through 2012

  • Earnings

    • Average salary (2000): $24,925 annually

  • Work environment

    • Constant work, sometimes outdoors; varied schedule; danger potential


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