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When it comes to a job as a vet assistant, there is more to it than just having a love for animals. It is not all rainbows and puppies, it's vital that you consider other qualities required in vet care jobs and look to see how they might match your personal characteristics.

What Is It Like Working As A Veterinary Nurse? 

As animal care online training teaches you fairly early on, vet clinics can often be chaotic places full of emotional owners and frightened animals, but the rewards are huge, particularly in terms of job satisfaction. It's just one of the many factors that make animal care such an attractive proposition.

It’s a fast-growing industry too, as the stats show it has been growing by just under 4% a year, every year, since 2017 (source). That means your services as a qualified vet assistant will always be in demand. 

What Skills Do I Need To Be A Veterinary Nurse? 

Well, there are many, and you may or may not have all of them. Some people are born with these attributes, whereas others are taught them through life experience. So, here we offer some career counselling  advice on the finer details of the personal traits a Vet Nurse calls for.

  • Focus - Of the veterinary practice you're working in will be a busy and chaotic place, with many distractions to stop you from getting tasks completed. As such, you'll need to have an ability to focus on the job at hand so you can get it completed, especially as an animal's health may depend on it!
  • Active Listening - a skill you won't need animal health care courses to perfect is your ability to listen, but it's one you'll need as a Vet Nurse. In the role, you have to follow the instructions of vets and vet technicians to the letter, or the care you're providing may not be right, so strong listening skills are an absolute must.
  • Compassion - it goes without saying that veterinary Nurses should have a love for animals to be suited to the role, so compassion for them is a given. However, this needs to extend to the owners who may get bad news about their fluffy pals from time to time. Be compassionate to everyone, including humans, and you won't go far wrong. 
  • Attention to Detail - there's not much room for error when caring for pets - something that will be pretty evident at some point in your animal health courses. That's why attention to detail is a vital skill in this line of work, particularly as you might be giving medication, monitoring animal health or sterilising surgical equipment. Sometimes it can literally mean life or death for the animals you're looking after, so it's an important aspect to get right. 
  • Patience - Sometimes, both animals and people can be difficult, and you get are exposed to a wide range of personality types, both human and canine. As such, in this kind of emotional situation (a sick pet), animals and their owners can become fractious, frustrated and difficult to deal with. You have to remember it's a stressful situation for everyone involved and exercise patience at all times.

After completing the relevant animal care courses and becoming a fully-fledged vet nurse, you'll face a number of challenges every day. In addition to what we've already discussed, you’ll need great problem-solving, critical thinking and conflict-management abilities. You'll need to be physically fit, too, as you'll pretty much always be on your feet! Have you considered a vet nurse course?

Achieve Your Vet Nurse Career With Short Courses Online 

Is veterinary assistance or vet nursing right for you? That’s the question. We hope that by reading our blog, you can understand its appeal or lack thereof. If you’re convinced it’s the job for you, then OCA short courses online can help you get there and develop your knowledge throughout your animal care career.

Turn your love for animals into a rewarding career. Whether you aspire to work closely with animals every day or are committed to enhancing their health and well-being, we encourage you to explore our Veterinary Assistant Pathway course. This program offers Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) and credit towards higher certification levels. Additionally, you'll have the opportunity for one-on-one mentoring sessions with a fully qualified Veterinarian, providing you with valuable career insights and key learnings.

OCA students get a next-level learning experience - something you can see by watching our Student Study Demo. As well as enjoying highly stimulating, industry-led content, you get an AI-driven platform that actively encourages further learning. Our entire library covers more than 20 different sectors, something you can see by visiting us today at

If you're passionate about animals and seeking a starting point to launch your career, consider enrolling in a short, CPD-approved animal care course. It could be your ideal first step towards realising your dream!

We understand choosing a career direction or the right course to study can be challenging; we are here to help. Contacting us is easy – simply call 1300 611 404 or email [email protected]. Alternatively, you can schedule a FREE career call at your preferred time... Book a call here 

We are excited to discuss your education journey and course options!

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