How to Become a Veterinary Technician in Washington

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How to Become a Veterinary Technician in Washington

Veterinary Technician Job Description

Pursuing a vet tech degree in Washington is considered a very wise decision being that Washington has numerous large animal and farm veterinary practices, as well as zoos and wildlife rehabilitation sanctuaries and vet techs can find jobs in both urban and rural areas.

It is good to mention that clinics in large cities usually pay more than rural practices, but it will also depend on what kind of animals you are working with.

The most common duties of a vet tech include the following:

  • Conducts physical exams
  • Takes and prepares blood, stool, urine samples for lab analyses
  • Assists the veterinarian with the preparing animals for surgery and during surgery
  • Assists with animals’ feeding and care
  • Supervises other veterinary aides and assistants
  • Interviews the animal’s owners
  • Provides emergency aid to injured or ill animals
  • Administers drugs prescribed by the veterinarian, and many more.

Accredited WashingtonVeterinary Technology Programs

When we speak about Accredited Washington Veterinary Technology Programs, we are glad to inform you that Washington has five accredited 2-year programs during which students will be able to learn nursing skills, laboratory procedures, equine and livestock medicine, as well as the care of lab animal and exotic animals among many other skills.

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You do not need to search for a list of Accredited Washington’s Veterinary Technology Programs, as we have gathered all the necessary information for you, so just keep on reading.

The only way to qualify for practice as a vet tech in Washington is to become a graduate of a program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).

Not long ago, the state of Washington decided not to accept people who pursue licensure based on their experience, but rather must graduate from an approved program.

Now, it is your task to choose one of five AVMA-accredited associate degree programs in veterinary technology in Washington which suits your needs and interests.

Bellingham Technical College boasts full accreditation from the AVMA for its associate of applied science (AAS) program.

Future vet techs will attend courses such as veterinary nursing; medical dosages and calculations; animal anatomy and physiology; veterinary nutrition; laboratory sciences; and medical terminology.

Furthermore, they will be required to complete several labs and six mentorship lab courses.

Pierce College (Fort Steilacoom) of Lakewood graduates have achieved amazing results on the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) as 96 percent of graduates passed the test on their first attempt.

This is a reason great enough for prospective students to enroll in an associate’s degree in vet technology program which typically takes 21 months to complete.

The program begins in September and continues through June, with a summer break in July and August.

Before graduation, students must complete 14 credits of veterinary clinical practice for a total of 93 credit hours.

Pima Medical Institute offers two accredited associate of applied science (AAS) degree programs in veterinary technology, one based in Seattle and the other in nearby Renton.

Both programs are 18 months long and they are a mix of online and in-classroom experiences.

Some of the courses included are laboratory animal science; small animal nursing for veterinary technicians; food and fiber animal; anatomy and physiology for vet techs; dentistry techniques; exotic animal medicine and nursing; etc.

Additionally, students must complete an externship for a program total of 78.5 credits.

Some courses are offered online, hybrid, or fully on-campus.

Pima is proud to offer its program across seven states, including these two accredited Washington locations.

Yakima Valley College is located in the heart of Washington state.

The school has an associate of applied science (AAS) degree in veterinary technology program available to those who show an interest in acquainting the range of skills necessary for the profession, including animal dentistry, inventory control, medical record-keeping, surgical assisting, veterinary ethics, and many others.

If none of the above-mentioned programs suits you, you can look for information on distance-based education programs that are very attractive in today’s modern society.

School NameAddress
Bellingham Technical College3028 Lindbergh Ave, Bellingham, Washington, 98225-1599
Pierce College at Fort Steilacoom9401 Farwest Dr SW, Lakewood, Washington, 98498-1999
Pima Medical Institute-Renton555 South Renton Village Pl-Ste 400, Renton, Washington, 98057
Pima Medical Institute-Seattle9709 Third Ave NE Suite 400, Seattle, Washington, 98115
Yakima Valley Community CollegeSouth 16th Ave. & Nob Hill Blvd., Yakima, Washington, 98907-2520

Requirements to Become a Licensed Veterinary Technician in Washington

We need to mention that in order to practice as a veterinary technician in WA, a person must have a license through the Washington State Department of Health.

After graduating from high school and achieving strong backgrounds in science with high marks in classes such as biology, physiology, and chemistry, you can think about enrolling in a vet tech program.

Due to the hands-on lab work involved in many vet tech positions, it is our suggestion, as many people find it useful, to volunteer in animal clinics, shelters, or other facilities for gaining experience prior to enrolling in an AVMA-accredited associate’s or bachelor’s degree program.

Usually, it takes 2 to 4 years to complete it and qualify for licensure in Washington.

The education at these accredited institutions makes you able to take and pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) which is offered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB).

Then, the next step in order to become a vet tech in WA is to complete an application with proof of graduation from an AVMA-accredited program, successful VTNE scores, AIDS training, as well as an open-book state examination with a score of at least 90 percent.

Make sure you know that licenses are valid for one year and you will need to renew the license with the Washington State Department of Health.

The renewal requires an application and the completion of 30 hours of continued education (CE) every three years, 10 of which can be completed online through a system such as VetMedTeam.

Job Prospects and Veterinary Technicians’ Average Annual Salary in  Washington

According to the statistics available through the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Washington currently employs 2,120 vet techs in veterinary clinics, animal shelters, colleges, scientific research facilities, and other environments.

But, you do not need to worry about your future as a vet tech, being that the number of openings for vet techs is expected to grow 20 percent.

The annual salary of vet techs is based on the region, facility, and duties he/she performs, but as a licensed vet tech you can expect to earn between $30669 and $43307.

Annual Salary Range:
$30K
$36K
$43K
10%
50%
90%
Annual Salary by Location:
LocationAvg. Annual Salary
Seattle$38,553
Spokane$34,958
Tacoma$37,569
Vancouver$36,739
Bellevue$38,553
Everett$37,707
Federal Way$37,569
Kent$37,494
Yakima$34,880
Bellingham$35,980

USA Veterinary Technicians by State


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