How to Become a Veterinary Technician in Massachusetts

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How to Become a Veterinary Technician in Massachusetts

Veterinary Technician Job Description

A veterinary technician’s job involves being familiar with both administrative work and health care.

Their job is demanding and their duties are numerous because all animal health care clinics trust them and rely on them.

They provide animals with appropriate medication and vaccination, take x-rays, hold animals during treatment and assist with surgery.

Veterinary technicians are also responsible for conducting blood tests, communication with pet-owners and diagnosing animal health conditions.

Furthermore, the role of a veterinary technician in a small veterinary facility differs from the responsibilities of those veterinary technicians who work in rescue centers and animal rehabilitation centers.

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Becoming a Veterinary Technician in Massachusetts

If you are interested in becoming a veterinary technician, a good thing to know is that the state of Massachusetts does not require a license to be able to work.

Since veterinary technicians work under the supervision of a veterinarian, they can learn the job duties during the day, which some of them succeed in.

However, many veterinary technicians decide to continue their further education, focus on gaining new knowledge related to work in a veterinary clinic and get certified, thus improving their chances of finding a better job.

If you possess a high school diploma or GED equivalency, which is obligatory, you can take a look at the vocational schools and colleges’ websites and search for an accredited program to enroll in.

The Massachusetts Veterinary Technician Association determines the education requirements for a veterinary technician’s certification in Massachusetts and only the accredited programs make students eligible for licensure.

Educational Requirements for Veterinary Technicians in Massachusetts

The veterinary technology programs accredited by the AVMA in Massachusetts are:

Prerequisites to the program include having had a tetanus shot, a rabies immunization, and proof of medical insurance.

Education can be achieved online, as there are nine AVMA-accredited veterinary technician programs available.

A veterinary college or institution gives you the chance to choose between an Associate of Science (A.S.) in Veterinary Technology, an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) in Veterinary Technology which both take two years to complete or a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Veterinary Technology which lasts four years.

The differences between the above-mentioned programs are that an A.A.S. in Veterinary Technology provides you with education which will make you immediately successful as a veterinary technician while an A.S. program offers you enough knowledge which has to be supplemented with continuing education and specialization.

The B.S. offers full education which makes you able to work not only in veterinary clinics but also in aquariums, vet schools, laboratories, wildlife preserves, and zoos.

The program curriculum includes both general courses and specialized courses as well.

The lessons are focused on animal health issues and how to deal with it.

Gaining experience is a compulsory part of your education and it can be achieved through internships.

The number of internships varies from program to program as an A.S. or A.A.S. program requires one to two internship assignments, but a B.S. program may include even six internship assignments.

Internship in Massachusetts can be done in:

  • Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital
  • Bulger Animal Hospital
  • Massachusetts Animal Medical Center

It is designed to get you involved in the real clinical setting and prepare you for your future work.

Many students who prove their abilities become employed after graduation in clinics where they finished their internship.

Veterinary Technician Examination and License

As you have decided to become licensed, you will need to fulfill some other requirements besides graduation from a post-secondary school.

What awaits you is the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) which is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB).

The price is $300 and you must forward your official transcript to the AAVSB which proves that you have finished an accredited Veterinary Technician program.

Then, you can register online at the AAVSB website.

An Authorization-to-Test letter (ATT) will be sent to you from the Professional Examination Service (PES) via Email.

Prometric Licensing and Examination Providers are in charge of the exam and they require you to bring government-issued ID when coming to the exam.

The VTNE Candidate Handbook is a very useful source to prepare for the examination as well as practice tests that can be found online.

To do the practice tests, you will need to pay $45 per attempt.

The VTNE exam takes 3 hours to complete and there are 170 questions, of which 20 are not counted in your score, as they are only pilot questions.

The VTNE questions are related to:

  1. Animal Care and Nursing
  2. Anesthesia
  3. Laboratory Procedures
  4. Pharmacy and Pharmacology
  5. Surgical Nursing
  6. Diagnostic Imaging
  7. Pain Management/Analgesia
  8. Dentistry
  9. Emergency Medicine/Critical Care

You will immediately get the scores on the screen.

Massachusetts is one of the very few states that neither requires veterinary technicians to possess certification nor to pass any kind of education, but many young people are eager to achieve the proper knowledge before start working.

The Massachusetts Veterinary Technician Association (MVTA) is in charge of the licensure and to get it, you are supposed to:

  • Complete the MVTA application form.
  • Provide documentation of a passing score on the VTNE.
  • Provide all official transcripts from your completed AVMA-accredited Veterinary Technician program.
  • Pay a $50.00 fee.

The license is prone to renewal each year, by filling in a certification renewal form, finishing 12 hours of continuing education on seminars and online courses suggested by the MVTA and paying a $35.00 renewal fee.

Job Prospects in Massachusetts

The chances of getting a job in Massachusetts are equal for all the candidates.

The employer and his/her staff will decide who will be hired.

Veterinary Technicians’ Average Annual Salary in Massachusetts

The difference in salary among the major cities exists, and that is caused by social factors.

Annual Salary Range:
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Arlington,MA $41,522
Attleboro,MA $38,656
Barnstable,MA $38,493
Boston,MA $41,522
Brockton,MA $39,532
Brookline,MA $41,522
Cambridge,MA $41,522
Chicopee,MA $38,145
Fall River,MA $38,474
Fitchburg,MA $39,034
Framingham,MA $39,870
Haverhill,MA $38,693
Holyoke,MA $38,145
Hyannis,MA $38,354
Lawrence,MA $38,693
Leominster,MA $38,352
Lowell,MA $39,788
Lynn,MA $41,522
Malden,MA $41,522
Medford,MA $40,460
Methuen,MA $38,693
New Bedford,MA $38,474
Newton,MA $41,522
Peabody,MA $41,473
Pittsfield,MA $37,185
Plymouth,MA $39,313
Quincy,MA $41,522
Revere,MA $41,522
Salem,MA $41,473
Somerville,MA $41,522
Springfield,MA $38,145
Taunton,MA $39,496
Waltham,MA $41,522
Westfield,MA $38,145
Weymouth,MA $39,532
Worcester,MA $38,437

Regional Salary in Massachusetts

Region Employed Avg. Annual Salary Avg. Hourly Pay Top 10% Annual Salary Bottom 10% Annual Salary
Barnstable Town, MA170$44,400$21.35$49,180$38,390
Boston-Cambridge-Nashua, MA-NH2,470$44,970$21.62$55,220$37,930
New Bedford, MA60$41,070$19.74$47,880$36,410
Pittsfield, MA50$40,980$19.7$48,320$36,550
Springfield, MA-CT310$42,370$20.37$48,700$36,690
Worcester, MA-CT340$42,490$20.43$49,620$36,740
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Veterinary Technologists and Technicians, OCC Code 29-2056, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

USA Veterinary Technicians by State

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