Veterinary technicians are essential to the smooth functioning of a vet clinic, providing valuable support to veterinarians in tasks such as administering medications, performing laboratory work, conducting exams, and assisting in surgeries. It’s a demanding yet fulfilling job! However, despite the significant responsibilities, many vet techs often find themselves earning less than expected, especially when starting out. But don’t worry, there are numerous opportunities to increase your vet tech salary. Let’s explore how you can make that happen.
Understanding Veterinary Technician Salaries
As of 2022, the average annual salary for veterinary technicians in the United States is $38,819. However, the exact figure can vary based on factors like your location, credentials, level of experience, and other relevant considerations.
To maximize your earning potential as a vet tech, there are several strategies you can employ, starting with gaining experience and obtaining credentials such as Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT), Licensed Veterinary Technician (LVT), or Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT). Here are five effective ways you can increase your salary as a vet tech!
1. Obtain the Necessary Credentials
If you haven’t already, consider pursuing credentials as a vet tech. Obtaining professional recognition can not only enhance your earning potential but is often a requirement to practice in many states. Keep in mind that each state has different licensing requirements. For instance, in Texas, you’ll need to graduate from an AVMA-accredited vet tech program, pass the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE), pass the Texas Licensing Veterinary Technician Examination (TLVTE), and apply for your license through the state board.
2. Expand Your Educational Horizons
One of the most effective ways to increase your earning potential as a vet tech is by furthering your education. While an AVMA-accredited vet tech associate degree is typically sufficient for entering the field, pursuing additional certifications or degrees can significantly boost your marketability. Consider pursuing a bachelor’s degree in veterinary technology or specialized certification in areas like anesthesia, oncology, or dentistry. Having these additional qualifications will make you stand out to potential employers and increase your chances of securing raises and bonuses. In fact, veterinary technologists with specialized skills earn an average salary of $50,395 per year or $24 per hour.
3. Specialize in High-Demand Areas
Another way to increase your earning potential is by specializing in a high-demand area of veterinary medicine. For example, becoming an expert in animal behavior or nutrition can make you more competitive in the job market and potentially lead to higher salaries. Additionally, exploring different career paths within the vet tech field, such as transitioning into a management role as a practice manager, can open doors to increased responsibility and higher pay. As of 2023, the average salary for practice managers was $54,401.
4. Explore Specialized Work Settings
While most vet techs work in animal hospitals or clinics, there are alternative options available for skilled veterinary technicians seeking higher pay. Some vet techs find opportunities in research facilities or zoos, which often offer more competitive salaries. If these options aren’t available in your area, consider working in an emergency vet clinic or hospital. These facilities operate outside of regular clinic hours and cater to urgent cases, allowing you to earn more. Keep in mind that working in this setting may require longer hours and greater demands. On average, emergency veterinary technicians earn $41,334 per year or $20 per hour.
5. Master the Art of Salary Negotiation
Remember, you have the power to negotiate your salary. While not every negotiation will be successful, it’s worth making the effort, as many employers and hiring managers expect candidates to negotiate. Research the average salaries for vet techs in your area and be ready to present a compelling case for why you deserve more. Highlight your experience, credentials, and specialized skills to demonstrate your value as a valuable member of the healthcare team. The more you bring to the table, the more you can potentially earn.
Further Your Veterinary Education Today
In a field as dynamic as veterinary medicine, continuous learning and staying updated are crucial. As a veterinary technician, you can take your career to the next level and increase your earning potential by pursuing additional vet tech education, conveniently through online programs. Consider enrolling in a bachelor’s degree program, such as the online Veterinary Technologist Bachelor of Science Program offered by DHPL Travels. To find out more about advancing your career or getting started today, visit DHPL Travels and reach out to our expert Admissions Specialists at 1-888-427-6500.
Remember, you have the ability to shape your future and increase your vet tech salary. Start taking the necessary steps to achieve your goals today!