How to Become a Vet Tech Without College

You can become a veterinary technician without going to college. Follow these steps and you’ll be on your way to a career in veterinary technology.

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There are many reasons why someone would want to become a vet tech but not everyone has the time or money to go to college. While going to school is the best way to become a vet tech it is not the only way. There are many ways to become a vet tech without going to college, and this guide will show you how.

The Pros of Being a Vet Tech

If you love animals and want to work in the medical field, becoming a vet tech could be the perfect career for you. You don’t need a college degree to get started, and you can gain the skills you need through on-the-job training and certification programs. vet techs play an important role in the animal healthcare field, and they enjoy a variety of benefits, such as job security, flexible work hours, and the satisfaction of helping animals and their owners.

You Can Start Working Sooner

One of the main pros of becoming a vet tech is that you can start working sooner than if you became a veterinarian. This is because becoming a vet tech only requires a two-year degree, whereas becoming a veterinarian requires a four-year degree. If you’re looking to start working in the animal health field as soon as possible, then becoming a vet tech may be the best option for you.

You Can Save Money

As a vet tech, you can potentially save money on your education. While you will need to get a veterinary technician license, you may not need to go to college to do so. In some states, you can become a licensed vet tech by completing a two-year veterinary technology program at a community college. In other states, you may be able to take an exam to become licensed without completing a formal education program.

You Can Get Experience Quicker

The first pro of becoming a vet tech without going to college is that you can get experience much quicker. If you want to become a vet but don’t want to spend years in school, then becoming a vet tech is a great option. You can start working as a vet tech in as little as six months.

The second pro is that you can become a certified vet tech without going to college. There are many professional organizations for vet techs such as the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA). To become certified, you will need to pass an exam, but you do not need a college degree.

The third pro is that you can still make a good salary without going to college. The median salary for a vet tech is $33,000 per year. That’s not bad for a job that only requires six months of training!

The fourth and final pro is that you can always go back to school and get your degree later if you decide you want to. After working as a vet tech for awhile, you may decide that you want to further your education and become a veterinarian. If that’s the case, then going back to school and getting your degree is always an option!

The Cons of Being a Vet Tech

Being a vet tech can be a very rewarding career, but it does have its downsides. One of the biggest cons is that you will not be able to earn as much money as you would if you had a college degree. Vet techs typically earn $30,000-$40,000 per year, while those with a college degree can earn $50,000 or more. Another con is that you will have to work long hours. Vet techs typically work 40 or more hours per week, and may have to work weekends and holidays.

You Might Not Get the Same Job Opportunities

Not all states recognize vet techs who haven’t gone through an accredited college program, which means your job prospects might be limited if you choose not to go the traditional route. In some cases, you may only be able to find work in a veterinary clinic or hospital that’s willing to take a chance on someone without accreditation. You may also have a harder time moving up within the field without the necessary credentials.

You Might Not Make as Much Money

As with any career, salary is always going to be a major factor in deciding whether or not being a vet tech is the right path for you. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median pay for vet technicians in 2018 was $33,280 per year. That works out to about $16 per hour. While that’s not a bad salary by any means, it’s important to keep in mind that vet techs do generally have quite a bit of student debt. The average vet tech school debt is around $33,000. So, you may want to consider whether or not you’re okay with starting your career with that much debt.

How to Become a Vet Tech

Vet techs are in high demand, and the job outlook is bright. If you’re thinking about a career in veterinary technology, you may be wondering if you need to go to college. The short answer is no—you can become a vet tech without a college degree. In this article, we’ll show you how.

Research Vet Tech Programs

Though you don’t need formal education to become a vet tech, completing a veterinary technician program can make finding a job easier.1 These programs are offered at community colleges, technical colleges, and some universities. You can usually find these schools by searching for “vet tech programs near me.”

Programs typically take two years to complete and include both classroom and hands-on learning opportunities. During your schooling, you will likely take classes such as animal anatomy, animal physiology, pharmacology, medical law and ethics, and First Aid for Veterinary Technicians.

After completing a vet tech program, you will need to pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). Once you have passed the VTNE, you will be a credentialed veterinary technician and can begin your career.

Find an Apprenticeship or Shadowing Opportunity

Most places that hire veterinary technicians will require that you have at least a two-year degree from an accredited veterinary technology program. There are, however, a few ways that you can become a vet tech without going to college. One way is to find an apprenticeship or shadowing opportunity.

An apprenticeship is a great way to get hands-on experience in the field and learn from experienced professionals. Many veterinarians are willing to take on an apprentice for a year or two. During this time, you will learn all the basics of being a vet tech, from animal restraint to medical terminology. You will also have the opportunity to observe surgeries and other medical procedures.

Shadowing is another great way to learn about the field of veterinary technology. If you know a vet tech or veterinarian who is willing to let you shadow them for a day or two, you can get an inside look at what the job entails. This is a great way to see if becoming a vet tech is the right career choice for you.

Get Certified

There are a few steps you can take to become a vet tech without going to college. The first step is to get certified. There are a few different ways to do this, but the most common way is to take the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE). This exam is offered by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards (AAVSB) and is recognized by most states as the standard certification for vet techs.

To be eligible to take the VTNE, you must have completed a veterinary technology program that is accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). If you have not completed such a program, you may still be eligible to take the exam if you have at least two years of experience working in a veterinary practice. Once you have passed the VTNE, you will need to apply for licensure in your state. Each state has its own requirements, but most will require you to submit proof of your VTNE score and pay a fee. Once you are licensed, you will be able to officially call yourself a vet tech!


There are a number of ways to become a vet tech without college, but the most common is to complete a vocational or technical training program. These programs typically last one to two years and can be found at many community colleges and technical schools. Once you have completed your program, you will need to pass the Veterinary Technician National Exam (VTNE) in order to become licensed or certified in your state.

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