Animal Care Assistant: Job Description

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Animal care assistants have a range of responsibilities including cleaning kennels, feeding and exercising animals, administering medication, and assisting veterinarians. They must love animals and have dedication to the job. The average salary in the US is $36,000.

An animal care assistant usually has a wide range of job responsibilities. Often considered an entry-level position in a veterinary office or kennel, many of the roles are janitorial. In addition to cleaning the pets and their kennels, an animal care assistant is typically needed to feed and water the animals, take care of their exercise, and sometimes administer medication.

In many cases, an animal care assistant also works with the veterinarian within the clinic. They can help keep animals still while tests are being performed. Prior to the examination, they may perform routine diagnostics such as weighing and taking body temperature. Information gained during these diagnostics is typically logged and then given to the veterinarian.

Animal feeding is usually one of the most time consuming tasks often assigned to an animal care assistant. This is because, in many cases, kennel animals can have very different diets, especially if some of them are sick. Different portions and different feeds may be required for all housed animals. During this time, medications are usually dispensed.

Most of the time, an animal care assistant is needed to exercise the animals being kenneled. Depending on the type of animal, this could include a leisurely walk or moving them to a running lot for more vigorous exercise. While the animals are out of their cages, another assistant is usually cleaning empty cages. Animals that are kenneled often experience a lot of stress and caretakers are expected to play and interact with them as much as possible in order to make them feel more comfortable.

In most veterinary clinics or kennels, cage cleaning is usually performed twice a day. This usually includes hosing the area and removing animal droppings or food scraps. If the cage has bedding or straw, this is usually changed during cleaning. Depending on the circumstances and specific illness of the animal, an assistant may also be needed to administer baths. This may include a full body wash or cleaning and treating wounds.

Ideally, an animal assistant should be someone who loves animals and enjoys working with them. The work is usually very difficult and requires a lot of dedication. In many cases, people working in these positions do so on a voluntary basis. The average salary for an animal care assistant in the United States (US) is around $36,000.

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