How Many Years Does It Take to Become a Vet Tech?

Becoming a veterinary technician can be a great career choice for animal lovers. But how long does it take to become a vet tech? We break down the timeline to help you plan your path to becoming a veterinary technician.

Checkout this video:


In order to become a licensed veterinary technician, you must complete a two-year accredited veterinary technology program and pass a state-administered examination.

There are many different types of programs available, including both on-campus and online options. Some programs may even offer accelerated coursework so that you can complete your degree in as little as 18 months.

Once you have completed your degree, you will need to pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) in order to become certified. The VTNE is administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB).

After passing the VTNE, you will then need to apply for licensure in the state in which you wish to practice. Each state has its own requirements for licensure, so be sure to check with your state’s Board of Veterinary Medicine for specific information.

With proper education and training, you can expect to begin your career as a veterinary technician in as little as two years.

The Road to Becoming a Vet Tech

The road to becoming a vet tech is not a quick or easy one. It takes a lot of time, dedication, and hard work. The average vet tech has been in school for four years, but it is not uncommon for vet techs to have been in school for six years or more. The first step on the road to becoming a vet tech is to complete a two-year accredited veterinary technology program.


While there are many ways to become a veterinary technician, most people enter the field by completing a 2-year veterinary technology program at a community college, technical school, or 4-year university. You’ll likely take classes in subjects such as animal anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, nutrition, and surgical nursing. Some programs also include courses in business and computer science.


While certification for vet techs is not currently required in every state, many employers prefer or even require certification. In addition, some states may require certification in order to practice. Recently, the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) accredited two programs that certify veterinary technicians: the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA) and the Academy of Veterinary Technician Anesthetists (AVTA).


In order to practice veterinary medicine, veterinary technicians must be licensed in the state in which they plan to work. Each state has different requirements for licensure, but all states require passing the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). The VTNE is a credentialing exam administered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards. After passing the VTNE, candidates must apply for licensure with their state’s Board of Veterinary Medicine.

The process of becoming licensed as a vet tech generally takes 1-2 years, depending on the state’s requirements. In some states, candidates must complete a formal education program at an accredited institution before taking the VTNE. In other states, candidates may take the VTNE without completing an educational program, but they may need to complete additional coursework or professional development hours after passing the exam.

How long does it take to become a vet tech?

The average person takes about four years to complete the necessary education and become a vet tech. There are a few reasons why it might take a little longer for some people. First, you have to complete an accredited program. These are typically two-year programs, but some schools offer four-year programs. You also have to take and pass a state certification exam.

The short answer

Assuming you already have a bachelor’s degree, and 1000 clinical hours, the average amount of time it takes to become a credentialed veterinary technician is about 2 years.

The long answer

It depends on which route you take to become credentialed. The shortest path is completing a two-year Associate’s degree from an AVMA (American Veterinary Medical Association) accredited Veterinary Technology program. From there, you would need to pass the VTNE (Veterinary Technician National Exam) to earn the credential of Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT).

However, many students choose to complete a four-year Bachelor’s degree in Veterinary Technology. While this is not required for certification, it may offer additional coursework and opportunities, such as internships and externships. It typically takes four years to complete a Bachelor’s degree.

Once you have completed an AVMA-accredited program and passed the VTNE, you will need to apply to your state for licensure. Each state has different requirements, but most require passing an additional state exam.

So, in summary, it can take 2-4 years to become a vet tech, depending on your educational path.


In conclusion, it takes about four years to become a vet tech. This includes two years of schooling and two years of practical experience. However, the time it takes to become a vet tech may vary depending on the specific requirements of your state or country.

Scroll to Top