• Cost $2,299

    Prices may vary and are subject to change at any time. Textbooks and exams included in price.

  • Commitment 6 months-1 year

  • Terms Offered Fall, Spring, Summer

Veterinary assistant hugs dog and smiles at camera

Love working with animals but not ready to commit to a degree in veterinary technology? Completion of our Veterinary Assistant program will allow you to begin working in veterinary offices and hospitals caring directly for different types of animals.

This program will teach you veterinary terminology, exam room procedures, pharmacology and inventory, as well as nursing skills, vaccine protocols, treatment, prevention of internal and external parasites and much more. You’ll gain an understanding of feline and canine behavior and restraint, husbandry of exotics and pocket pets, as well as common diseases and medical conditions seen in clinical practice. In addition, you’ll learn basic animal nursing skills, such as taking vitals, bandage application, ear/eye medicine administration, vaccine protocols, and treatment and prevention of internal and external parasites. Hospitalized patient care including cleaning, feeding, walking, fluid therapy and pain management as well as the importance of teamwork in veterinary practice, will be discussed. Finally, you will learn about the veterinary assistant’s role in surgical procedures including patient prep and recovery, surgical room conduct and surgical instrument and supply care.

In this course you'll learn how to:

assistant distracts dog while veterinarian gives dog shot
  • define the roles and responsibilities of the veterinarian, veterinary technician and veterinary assistant
  • navigate the veterinary code of ethics as defined by the AVMA
  • schedule appointments and follow appropriate check in, admission and discharge procedures including confirming client information and creating an invoice, along with taking a payment
  • properly apply and utilize directional terms in relation to body position
  • observe canine and feline behaviors to provide a less stressful environment and utilize appropriate handling techniques for the safety of the patient and technician/veterinarian
  • assist with vaccinations for cats and dogs and the location of administration
  • obtain a patient history including weight, body condition score, diet information from the client and when applicable for emergency triage, temperature, respiration rate, pulse/heart rate and capillary refill time/mucous membrane color
  • identify anatomy and physiology of dogs and cat body systems
  • properly position and restrain patients in radiology procedures
  • apply and remove simple bandages, as well as nutritional support
  • restrain animals for blood and urine collection and document results
  • prepare the following lab procedures: blood smear prep, SNAP test set up, urine test strip use, refractometer use and set up, urine sediment set up (not required to read), ear cytology slide prep
  • collect fecal samples for flotation and smears
  • properly restrain animals for assisting in anesthetic induction and intubation
  • identify common surgical instruments found in a general surgery pack/spay packs including suture and scalpel blade size
  • practice in the regular care of a large animal
  • demonstrate and utilize appropriate medical terminology and abbreviations, as related to the clinical laboratory

Admission Requirements

  • Must be at least 16 years of age
  • A high school or GED is not required

Next Steps

  • Find Your Course

    Use our course finder to get info about upcoming classes including dates, times, locations, and more. (Select WFD/CE 2023-2024)

  • Register

    Registering for a course is easy and can be done in-person, online, or by mail.

  • Learn About Funding Options

    Many of our courses have funding options available for qualifying students.