How to Become an Animal Caretaker- Job Role, Environment, Skills Required and Salary

Wild animal caretakers are professionals responsible for preserving the animals’ well-being and ensuring their habitat is appropriately maintained. Animal caretakers usually work in a variety of environments, including kennels, zoos, stables, animal shelters, pet stores, veterinary clinics, and aquariums.

Animal caretakers prepare meals for the animals and clean their cages every day. Additionally, they are in charge of reporting any injuries and strange actions. They occasionally respond to inquiries from the public and schoolchildren on field excursions. This role can be dangerous, and there is a high risk of injuries from aggressive animals.

The majority of wild animal keepers have a bachelor’s degree in zoology or animal science. Veterinary technicians with veterinary diplomas can, in some situations, qualify as animal caretakers. There are many employees who select aspirants to have experience in working with various animals. Usually, internship programs and voluntary work allow you to gain this experience.

What does an Animal Caretaker Do?

Their everyday tasks as animal caretakers could change depending on where they work. However, there are several regular duties that all animal caregivers must perform. These consist of managing and cleaning the spaces where animals live, bathing and grooming animals, and Animal feeding, including possible bottle feeding and food consumption monitoring. 

They are also in charge of providing animals with obedience training as required, keeping track of the diet, activity, temperament, and physical condition of animals, and carrying out examinations of the animals on a regular basis to search for signs of illness or injury.

In animal shelters, dogs and cats are regularly cared for by non-farm animal caretakers. All animal caregivers take care of the essential needs of the animals. Still, those with more experience may have additional work, including assisting with vaccinations or euthanizing animals under the guidance of a veterinarian.

How to Become a Wild Animal Caretaker?

If you wish to pursue a career as a wild animal caretaker, one of the first things to think about that how much schooling you’ll need. We have found that bachelor’s degrees are held by 51.1% of wild animal caretakers who take care of wild animals.

In terms of higher education levels, we determined that 2.6% of those who take care of wild animals are master’s degree holders. Although most people who look after wild animals have a college degree, you can become one with just a high school diploma or GED.

Some animal caretaker positions require prior animal-related job experience. The fact that you have such expertise demonstrates to the employer that you value working with animals and are aware of the rewards and difficulties associated with doing so.

Types of Animal Caretakers

Animal trainer- An Animal trainer is a well-skilled person who trains animals typically for a service, such as a seeing-eye dog, security, or amusement. Animal trainers also teach pets good manners and obedience. Dogs, horses, and aquatic animals like dolphins are the most common species of animals trained by this professional.

Groom– A groom usually referred to as a horse groom or horse groomer, typically takes care of horses in a stable. The groom’s tasks also include:

  • Feeding and watering the horses.
  • Cleaning out the stalls, bathing, and grooming the horses.
  • Dealing with minor injuries.

It is possible for grooms who care for racehorses or show horses to be asked to travel to events and take care of the horses there.

Kennel attendant– Animals whose owners have boarded them at the kennel receive care from a kennel attendant. The responsibilities of the kennel attendant may include the following:

  • Managing the animals’ living space.
  • Feeding and grooming them.
  • Exercising them.
  • Providing them with necessary medication.
  • Keeping an eye on their health.

Depending on the workplace, kennel attendants are typically controlled by a kennel manager or veterinarian.

Pet groomer– Pet groomers bathe and trim animals’ nails and cut and style their fur. They must perform pet grooming services, keep their brushes, scissors, and other grooming instruments clean, maintain a sanitary work environment, and check the pets for fleas, ticks, and other parasites as part of their professional duties.

Veterinary Assistant– A veterinary assistant gives animals sent to the veterinarian for treatment care. Veterinary technicians or veterinarians typically supervise the work of veterinary assistants. They are responsible for cleaning the clinic, feeding, grooming, and exercising animals, as well as holding and calming animals while they receive medical attention. They also sterilize the equipment used by the veterinarian.

Zookeeper– In a zoological park, a zookeeper or caretaker takes good care of the animals. The zookeeper’s responsibilities typically include the following:

  • Giving food and water to the animals.
  • Keeping their cages clean.
  • Keeping an eye out for any symptoms of illness or injury.

Moreover, zookeepers could be asked to educate zoo visitors about the animals via presentations and feeding demonstrations.

Skills Required for an Animal Caretaker

Able to learn quickly: A lot of animal caregivers learn on the job. Because of this, it’s crucial that you can understand directions, follow them, and acquire things quickly.

Flexibility: There are times when working with animals is unpredictable. Your ability for fast thinking and situational flexibility could be an asset in a kennel or clinic setting.

Good customer service skills: Animal caretakers must regularly interact with customers and pet owners. In a veterinary clinic, you could be asked to record a pet’s medical history, which requires you to pay close attention to the owner and have strong interpersonal skills.

A love for animals: You should care for the health and well-being of animals in addition to having affection for them. It would be best if you cherished spending long periods with animals.

Patience: You may be required to deal with disturbed animals as well as worried pet owners. This situation calls for tolerance and the capacity for stress-free composure.

Salary of an Animal Caretaker

In India, an animal caretaker makes an average pay of 22,320 rupees per month. By 2029, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that the employment of animal caretakers will rise by 22%.

Compared to all other professions, this is significantly above average. One factor contributing to this tremendous growth rate is the increasing number of households owning pets, which has increased demand for facilities offering professional animal care, such as kennels, veterinarians, and grooming shops.

Frequently Asked Questions on Animal Caretakers

Q. How do I become a caretaker of animals?

Ans: If you wish to pursue a career as a wild animal caretaker, one of the first things to consider is how much schooling you’ll need. You can become one with just a high school diploma or GED.

Q. What is the highest paying Pet job?

Ans: A veterinarian is one of the highest-paying animal careers.

Q. What is the best job for someone who loves animals?

Ans: Some of the best jobs for someone who loves animals include Pet groomer, Veterinarian, Veterinary Assistant, and Wildlife biologist.

Q. What special skills do you need to be an animal caretaker?

Ans: Able to learn quickly, Patience, Flexibility, etc. are some crucial skills required to become an animal caretaker.

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