Steps to Become a Veterinary Technician in North Carolina

Love of animals and your ability to care for sick and injured animals are the north-carolinamain characteristics needed for a successful career as a Veterinary Technician in North Carolina. In order to work as a Vet Tech in North Carolina, you must adhere to the requirements for registration to work in the state.

Employment Opportunities for Vet-Techs in North Carolina

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2013 job opportunities in North Carolina for Licensed Veterinary Technicians is projected to grow at least 30 percent from 2012 to 2022, far faster than the national average.

Many of these jobs will be spurred as spending for pet/animal services expands. The animal consumer market has grown into a multi-billion dollar industry and quality medical care is a top priority for animal owners. Employment will open up in a variety of capacities such as medical specialty clinics, rescue shelters, exotic animal rescue and rehabilitation facilities, teaching colleges, research laboratories, non-profit organizations, and in the military and government.

Veterinary Technician Salaries in North Carolina

Licensed Veterinary Technicians in North Carolina earned a median annual wage of $28,000 in May 2012. The average Vet Tech’s salary in 2014 is $29,000. Annual salaries can range from $17,000 to $39,000 or more depending on your background, experience, any medical specialties you have pursued and the location of the veterinary practice.

What Veterinary Technicians do in North Carolina

As a Licensed Veteran Technician your tasks may include:

  • Observe and record an animal’s behavior and condition
  • Provide nursing care to ill and/or surgery recovering patients
  • Administer emergency first aid as needed to injured animals
  • Assist in surgery, administer anesthesia, monitor responses and vital signs
  • Collect blood, urine, or tissue samples for laboratory testing
  • Perform lab tests such as urinalyses and blood counts
  • Take and develop x rays and other types of imaging
  • Administer medications, vaccines, and treatments prescribed by a veterinarian
  • Communicate with animals’ owners in an informed and courteous manner

Accredited North Carolina Veterinary Technology Programs

In order to become a registered Veterinary Technician in North Carolina you must attend and successfully graduate from a 2-year program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

Veterinary Technician programs offer students hands-on experience with dairy cattle, horses, cats, chickens, dogs, rabbits, hamsters, sheep, goats, pigs, llamas, turkeys, rodents, ferrets, reptiles, birds and zoo or exhibition animals. You may also have an opportunity to work with lab animals including mice, rats and guinea pigs.

Students gain practical skills in veterinary radiology, surgery, patient records, in-coming patient protocol and client education. Students can use this knowledge for employment in university teaching hospitals, nonprofit and government animal services facilities, at large and small animal hospitals and veterinary practices, pharmaceutical and biological research laboratories, feed companies and animal sanctuaries and shelters.

Some graduates pursue additional education, whether a four-year veterinary technology degree, or a degree in a related area such as animal science.

(For List of Accredited North Carolina’s Veterinary Technology Programs click here.)

 Veterinary Technician Coursework

  • Animal Husbandry
  • Nutrition
  • Medical Terminology
  • Clinical Procedures & Techniques
  • Diagnostic Lab Procedures
  • Surgical Nursing & Anesthesia
  • Zoological Animal Care
  • Pharmacy and Medication
  • Diagnostic Imaging
  • Animal Diseases, Parasitology and Entomology

The Vet Tech can also specialize in:

  •  Dental Technician
  • Internal Medicine
  • Clinical Practice
  • Animal Nutrition
  • Equine Medicine
  • Clinical Pathology
  • Behavior Modification
  • Zoological and Exotic Animal Medicine
  • Emergency and Critical Care nursing
  • Anesthetist

Financial Aid Opportunities

Your Veterinary Technician program in North Carolina will have Student Aid information for you. Scholarships set up by businesses or private foundations and/or traditional student loans may also be available. Your Student Guidance Counselor can discuss your specific financials needs and your coursework.

After graduating from a Veterinary Technician program in North Carolina, you will be prepared to take the national and state licensing board exams. After passing these exams you will be able to practice as a Licensed Veterinary Technician in North Carolina as well as in most other states under reciprocity guidelines.

North Carolina Vet-Tech License Testing and Licensing Requirements

To become a Registered Veterinary Technician in North Carolina you:

  1. Must submit a completed application to the Veterinary Medical Board.
  2. Have graduated from an AVMA accredited program for Veterinary Technicians.
  3. Pass the VTNE – Veterinary Technician National Exam. The national exam is a 200 question multiple choice exam. The Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE) is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards.
  4. Must successfully pass the North Carolina State exam.

The North Carolina State Exam is a Practice Act and Statute exam. It is 70 true/false questions along with 30 multiple choice style questions. To take this test you must submit the following documentation:

  •  proof that you have graduated from one of the AVMA-approved online or campus based North Carolina Veterinary Technician programs
  • passport style photograph – no digital or person photos are accepted
  • a copy of your social security card
  • a copy of your college transcript
  • proof of name change, if name is different than that on the application (copy of divorce decree or marriage license is acceptable)
  • verification of your credentials if you are licensed in another state

Continuing Education for License Renewal in North Carolina

After your initial registration as a Veterinary Technician in North Carolina you must renew your license every two years. In order to renew, you must submit proof of 12 hours of continuing education as well as the renewal application and the required fee by Dec. 31 of your renewal year.

Continuing education must be achieved by an approved provider. Only three hours out of the 12 hours can be earned through a computer based class. No correspondence type courses are acceptable and cannot be counted as continuing education credits.

Career Opportunities

Your school will have assistance available to you while looking for a job. Also, the Committee on Veterinary Technician Education and Activities (CACVT) has an active job posting page separated into geographic regions.

The National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA), an organization that represents and promotes the profession of veterinary technician, has a resources in their website’s Career Center page.

Potential Employers in North Carolina for Licensed Veterinary Technicians

  • Hudson Animal Hospital (Hudson)
  • Wilkinson Animal Hospital (Gastonia)
  • Southwoods Animal Hospital (Greensboro)
  • Avian & Exotic Animal Care (Raleigh)
  • Heritage Exotic Animal Services (Wake Forest)
  • AniMed (Hubert)
  • Academy Pet Hospital (Fayetteville)

For more information you can refer to these resources:

Your Career as a Licensed Veterinary Technician in North Carolina

Working as a registered Veterinary Technician in North Carolina as a Licensed Veterinary Technician will provide you with an exciting career, the chance to gain more education and experience in a specialized animal facility and the satisfaction gained from helping animals needing your medical attention.

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