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Vet nursing is one of the fastest-growing industries in Australia, with thousands of newly qualified veterinary nurses needed in the next few years. That said, animal care jobs are always hotly contested, as working in a veterinary practice offers one of the most rewarding day-to-day working experiences around.

As such, if you want to be part of the next wave of vet nurses in Australia, you need to be organized and fully prepared to impress. In this article, we offer some useful, actionable tips for securing a vet nursing job. It starts by researching and understanding what the role entails.

What Does a Vet Nurse Actually Do?

As a full-time vet nurse, you’ll be working closely in a vet practice, supporting the veterinary surgeon on a day-to-day basis. You’ll typically have a full day and a range of responsibilities that will usually include the following:

  • Preparation of animals for surgery or X-rays

  • Sterilising surgical equipment

  • Liaising with pet owners before & after surgery

  • Carrying out animal assessments

  • Offering vet nurse advice in consulting rooms

  • Assisting vet surgeons in theatre

  • Administering medication to pet patients

  • Providing updates to the practice manager

  • Assisting vets in euthanasia

Vet nurses act as the right hands of veterinarians in veterinary clinics across the country, helping them to apply their considerable expertise to as many animals as possible. The question is, how do you actually go about securing a vet nursing job?

Securing a Vet Nursing Job Starts With Qualifications

When attempting to join the Australian vet nursing industry, you’ll need the right formal qualifications, which usually take the form of TAFE training like a Certificate IV in Vet nursing. Taken full-time or part-time at a TAFE establishment or other RTO, it can take 2-3 years.

As part of this type of training, you’ll get work experience as part of a placement. That said, it’s a big investment in time and money, which is why more people are turning to short courses online.

Learn About Veterinary Care at Your Own Pace

At OCA, our vet nursing courses, you get to learn at a time and pace that suits your needs, not those of other students. You want to train well and make sure your first year as a vet nurse is a success, and our industry-led content is CPD-endorsed and created in collaboration with top experts from the industry.

Being remotely delivered online, there’s no geographical barrier to your learning, meaning it doesn’t matter if you live in Sydney, NSW, or Melbourne, Victoria. It’s a much cheaper way to gain access to a rewarding career in animal care, too, as there’s no need for commuting.

Gaining the Necessary Practical Experience

In general practice, you need your training to be backed by some evidence that you’ve applied your practical skills in the real world. If you’ve taken the TAFE route, your practical training will be taken care of, but if you’ve learned online, you’ll need to get it another way.

Securing a vet nursing job is tough without this, but the good news is, hands-on experience can be gained through volunteering and apprenticeships. By giving up your time offering first aid and care at an animal shelter or other similar animal health providers, you’ll something to put on your CV. Check out our blog on how to get a work placement.

Developing a Standout Resume & Cover Letter

Another way to ensure you’re taken seriously when applying for vet nurse jobs is to create a great CV and cover letter. As we’ve just mentioned, if you’ve volunteered at patient care facilities like animal hospitals, kennels, or animal welfare shelters, make sure it’s listed loudly and proudly.

Also, make sure that you:

  • List all of your qualifications, both from school and further education

  • Highlight experiences you had working as a team (as it certainly applies)

  • Detail your outside life honestly, as a good work-life balance is expected

  • Explain your animal handling skills - even if that’s only as an owner

  • Speak about your communication skills and ability to take initiative

Securing a vet nursing job means standing out from the crowd, so be sure to mention anything you think might be relevant to your application.

Preparing For Interviews

When studying for the veterinary industry with OCA, you get your own personal expert mentor, and they can help give you some great insight on how to make a great impression. It’s vital that you go into your interview confidently and well-prepared, which means looking up the most common interview questions for the industry and preparing answers.

Being successful when applying for veterinary nurse jobs also requires you to express your passion for animal health clearly. You can have all the training in the world, but if passion is missing, your chances of getting hired by a vet clinic go down markedly.

Securing a Vet Nursing Job Made Easy With OCA Online Learning

Securing a vet nursing job can be challenging, but with the right training and prep, you set yourself up for success. So, if you have designs of working as a nurse in a veterinary hospital or you want to start with some animal attendant training, OCA’s CPD-endorsed, industry-led short course learning gives you everything you need in an affordable and convenient way.

Furthermore, we offer a next-level learning experience that transcends traditional text-based courses - something you can find out more about by watching our Student Study Demo. Alternatively, if you’d like to know more about us or you’d like to see our full course library (covering 20+ industries), visit us today at

However, if you’d like to speak to us directly about how our learning can help with securing a vet nursing job in Australia, call 1300 611 404 or email [email protected].

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