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New career path?

March 31st, 2007, 06:55 PM
Sooo I'm thinking about taking animal sciences, the ordeal that Muskokapuss has just went through has made me think about opening my own kennel someday but in the mean time I would really like to get some sort of diploma or degree related to animals. I searched and found that ICS, they used to have those commercials on TV I think, offers an animal sciences course. In 6 months I can have the course done and all from the comfort of my own home. I'm a little wary of it just because there is a lot to learn that doesn't come from textbooks so I'd have to go out and try to get into a vet office, which is what I would do in either case. I'm excited at the prospect of taking this course, it's completely opposite of what I went to college become a police officer :o

Does anyone else have a background in this that could share some pearls of wisdom?

April 1st, 2007, 07:29 AM
Soo... What degree are you looking for exactly? And AHT degree?

I just know that if you get an Animal Science BSc here, you can't do much other than agricultural stuff and entry level animal health technician jobs, without an MSc or PhD...

April 2nd, 2007, 12:45 AM
What about the various degrees at Guelph? Don't they have some good animal related courses? And you could always become a vet tho I know we do not have enough vet seats -and they do not cost as much as med school seats for govt to fund them so I don't know why universities do not create more- esp since the demographic studies all show the boomers and others - even younger ppl (like iin their 20's) - not planning large families but having furbabies. I can see vet studies being a growing area of study, not one that's treated the way it is.

Never settle for the least common denominator is my motto - be the best you can be and even if you do not get into vet school ,look at other options (Other countries? Other areas of study that will lead you to work with animals? Many large vet clinics now need techies - like lab tech, diagnostic imaging, etc. and those courses are easy to get into - well, easier than med school at any rate. - and in demand!)

There are also degrees now in Bachelor of Applied Animal Technology and there is a Bachelor of Animal & Veterinary Biosciences in Va - that sounds interesting! Purdue has a similar one that has a specialization in Animal behaviour - there is the whole area of animal psychology to consider, My sister has brought her cats to a psychologist - I'd like to know where that person obtained her degree? Kansas has distance education in a bachelor of Animal Sciences.

I just hope these are not learning places for people to work in labs with animals!! That would be awful but there are many places with animals (Rescue centers, SPCA's - the good ones! - other vet clinics) that need good and caring and compassionate people!!

I simply do not understand people who become vets and then go to work for the "food" industry like someone I know who works at Maple Leaf Foods as a vet - where they kill animals! It sounds to me to be akin to working as a doctor for the execution chamber in Texas or one of those states that kills so many people. (well mostly men but you know what I mean!) What possible joy is there in that job?

I mean, I see death alot but it is mitigated by those we save and the miracles we see. How can someone in good conscience work at a place that kills animals? I just do not get that at all!!

At any rate, good luck in your search~! Those private colleges - the ones always advertising on TV I mean (tho UI know universities have taken ti the air waves too, lol) tend to charge more money for a less reputable diploma so be careful! Get a good course and it will be much more helpful to you!!!

April 3rd, 2007, 08:13 AM
I took the ICS course and while it did help me get my first clinic job, I don't think I would do it again. It is a really easy course and you would have many more options career wise if you took the tech course. Becomming a tech opens the door to many possibilities(not just clinics and labs). Where as the ICS course really just leaves you with kennel positions(cleaning up after everyone else, yes you get to work with animals and yes you learn a lot on the job but you have to work your butt off, prove yourself to advance and it takes time). I was able to make tech status but I had to work three times as hard as everyone else to get there, it was rewarding but if I had to do it again I would have just gone to college for two yrs to be a real tech.

There is a college in Ridgetown, when I lived in London I knew a few people that commuted there everyday(not sure how far it is). More expensive and takes two yrs but I think in the end it would be worth it. Also if you open a kennel and people know your a tech they will feel more at ease about leaving their pet with you...I would. With all the clinics in London it wouldn't be hard finding a job as people are always looking for greener patures(aka more money), also as a tech you can make anywhere from 12 to 20 bucks an hour, most I think make between 16-18 and start at 12-14. Also if you find something you have a particular intrest in you can specialize in that area.

Career Opportunities (there are more possibilities such as opening your own business, like a kennel)

Biomedical research
Zoos and wildlife facilities
Military service
Food safety inspection Diagnostic laboratories
Veterinary supply sales
Humane societies and animal control facilities
Drug and feed manufacturing companies
Spca inspector(I think there's a course for that but I think they like techs, you already have the police background)

Really anything animal related or anthing that has vets working for/with them.

I think a lot of times as to why techs seem to move from clinic to clinic is due to the atmosphere they work in, some vets don't allow their techs to practice all they know(such as educating clients, not just about medical stuff but nutrition, training, behavior).

Anyway just my two cents, I found the ICS course to be more of a something to do, it just seems to teach basics about the topics it covers, while helpful I found I only learned a little as a lot I already new; I think its a little pricy for what you get. Now if your happy being an assistant/kennel person it can help get your foot in the door but starting your own business I think you would get more out of tech school. You could learn most of what you need to operate a kennel, on the job but doing the tech course may help to fast track that or if you can find animal care/science course that is a little more indepth than the ICS one. I'd google animal care workers and see if you can find anything about qualifications/education needed(I just don't want you to waste 800 bucks on something that may leave you feeling like you didn't learn much more than you already do, being outgoing, having a love for animals, hardworking, willing to learn, team player and being able to work on your own is enough to get your foot in the door to working in a clinic as a kennel attendant/assistant (oh and work well under pressure).

Well that was long, good luck and best wishes. Also taking a course as a professional animal trainer maybe all you need to help open a kennel as some places cover health and nutrition and the business side of things(I just don't know of any schools).

April 3rd, 2007, 09:05 AM
Thank you guys for the input, I think I'll steer clear of the ICS course then. I'm going to look into the options for college courses and choose one. I just hate to think of another 2 or 3 years of college and the $$$ but if I enjoy it and get to work in a field I like then it will be worth it.

April 3rd, 2007, 05:47 PM
Have you already done any sort of science degree? Some courses might carry over and make it shorter...:shrug:

April 3rd, 2007, 05:59 PM
The collage in Ridgetown Ontario offers a vet tech course run in conjunction with Gulphs vet program. It depends on what you are looking for and what time frame you have. I'm doing the ICS course right now ,as I run my own pet sitting buisness, and I look at it as away to improve upon my buisness. I wish I could take the Vet Tech program at Vanier , but I don't have the time/money or patiences to go back to school with a bunch of young kids

April 3rd, 2007, 06:01 PM
Vanier is pretty cheap though. And the kids... well, they're probably more career oriented than a lot of the kids at university...:o