Veterinary Technician

Veterinary Technician - Veterinary Assistant

Attend the online session and learn more about our Nursing & Allied Health Programs

Turn your love of animals into a satisfying career! BTC’s Veterinary Assistant Certificate program is ideal if you have an aptitude for math and science, and are interested in being a valuable part of the veterinary care team. You’ll work with animals and people, in a job that is different every day.

With BTC’s high quality education and hands-on training, you’ll gain the valuable skills needed now by veterinary hospitals, surgery centers, specialty care providers, zoos, and wildlife facilities.

Note: BTC has not made a determination that the Veterinary Technician curriculum meets educational requirements for licensure/certification outside of Washington State. We encourage students who plan to work out-of-state to check relevant local licensure/certification requirements.

Employment Information

Data are provided on a program (not credential) level

79%1 / 95%3 BTC graduate placement rate

$35,506 starting annual wage2
$39,770 average annual wage2
$46,072 potential annual wage2

  • Employment and Wage Data Sources

    1Employment data come from the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges (SBCTC) and reflect WA/OR employment for students enrolled at BTC between 2016-17 and 2018-19. Students are included in the employment rate if they left with a credential. Rates are not shown for programs with fewer than 10 students meeting the above criteria.

    2Wage data come from Washington State Employment Security Department (ESD) 2020 Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates (Washington State wage) and reflect 2015-2018 employment. Wage data represent occupations that BTC faculty have identified as the most relevant career paths for program graduates. Note that these wages reflect employees with varying educational levels/credentials. For cases in which multiple occupations have been identified by faculty, a weighted percentile is calculated using each occupation’s percentile wage and employment size estimate. Wages are not shown for programs for which occupations do not meet the ESD’s minimum thresholds for publishing. If the program has wage data from the Washington SBCTC that involves shift work, these ESD wages reflect the same number of hours used in the annual wage calculation. Starting wage = 25th percentile, median wage = 50th percentile, wage potential = 75th percentile.

    3Additional employment rates are provided for programs with faculty who maintain their own employment records of students who graduated between 2015-16 and 2017-18 and who were employed in their field of study within 9 months of graduation. These additional, faculty-provided rates are particularly important for programs that tend to have graduates employed outside of WA and OR. Note that due to lack of available data, rates may represent fewer than 3 years of graduates.

Entry Information

When Can I Start?

Students interested in the Dental Hygiene Program are encouraged to meet with Allied Health College Navigator Laura Doss by emailing The college navigator will help you plan a course of study. 

Admission requirements for Veterinary Assistant are the same for Veterinary Technician

Attend an online Allied Health Info Session on November 17, 2021 and learn about our Allied Health programs, about funding and student support resources that can help you get started at BTC.

Attend an online Veterinary Technician Info Session on May 12, 2022 and learn about our Veterinary Technician program, about funding and student support resources that can help you get started at BTC.

This program typically admits students into first quarter core courses in the fall. Registration for Fall Quarter starts halfway through Spring Quarter.

Program-ready students are invited to register for Veterinary Assistant courses. Students who have completed ALL prerequisite requirements before the start of first quarter core courses will be allowed entry based on the order in which they register. 

There is no separate admission process or application for this program.

Starting in Fall students will be required to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19. To be considered fully vaccinated, two weeks must have passed since the date of the second dose or first dose for the one-dose vaccine. The program’s clinical partner agencies will not accept any exemption to full COVID-19 vaccination.

What are the Minimum Entry Requirements?

ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) v.6

Applicants must score at the "BASIC" level or higher in each of the four areas on one transcript. See the ATI Test of Essential Academic Skills handout for more information about this entrance assessment.

Having trouble scheduling your ATI TEAS assessment? More options are available! Email your advisor: 

Evidence of High School graduation or equivalent submitted to BTC Admissions Department.

Students must be 18 years or older before beginning program core courses.

Early Program Course Requirements

Completion of the following courses with a minimum grade of 2.0 (C) or higher in each course:

  • English Composition 1 (ENGL& 101)
  • Math in Society (MATH& 107) or any MATH course from the AAS-T alternative course list will be accepted.
  • Interpersonal Communications (CMST& 210) or General Psychology (PSYC& 100)
  • General Biology with Lab (BIOL& 160)
  • Introduction to Chemistry (CHEM& 121) preferred, will accept other courses in the following fields: BIOL, CHEM, OCEA, ZOOL
  • Intro to Veterinary Technology (VETT 100)

ONLY for students who are transferring prior credits to BTC: Official transcripts documenting prerequisite course completion must be submitted and evaluated before registration.

Physical Requirements

AFTER admissions acceptance into the program and prior to beginning program classes students must submit proof of all Clinical Placement Requirements.

Veterinary Technician Informed Acknowledgment and Consent to Hazards and Risks

What are My Next Steps?


Total Program Credits: 62

  • Quarter 1

  • VETT 101Veterinary Nursing I4 CR
  • VETT 102Veterinary Anatomy & Physiology I5 CR
  • VETT 103Veterinary Medical Terminology3 CR
  • VET 120Medical Dosages and Calculations3 CR
  • VETT 201Mentorship Lab I2 CR
  • Quarter 2

  • VETT 104Veterinary Nutrition I3 CR
  • VETT 105Learning for a Lifetime2 CR
  • VETT 106Microbiology, Virology, & Mycology3 CR
  • VETT 107Small Animal Parasitology4 CR
  • VETT 108Radiology I4 CR
  • VETT 202Mentorship Lab II2 CR
  • Pre-Program

  • ENGL& 101English Composition I5 CR
  • MATH& 107Math in Society5 CR
  • BIOL& 160General Biology with Lab5 CR
  • CHEM& 121Intro to Chemistry5 CR
  • PSYC& 100General Psychology5 CR
  • OR
  • CMST& 210Interpersonal Communications5 CR

Program Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be prepared to:

  • Care for animals in a manner that is safe for both animals and humans;
  • Promote public health;
  • Accept the responsibilities of his/her profession, to provide compassionate, competent, ethical care in a professional, conscientious manner;
  • Pursue lifelong learning to advance his/her knowledge of veterinary care;
  • Understand normal anatomy, physiology and behavior of health for the species studied;
  • Understand and participate in the process of diagnosis, therapy and prevention of animal disease;
  • Understand the profession of veterinary technician including: occupational safety, public health, client and colleague communication, ethics of animal welfare, and the human-animal bond;
  • Provide critical thinking skills to reason through clinical situations and take appropriate action;
  • Provide social interactive skills to facilitate excellent communication with clients and colleagues;
  • Provide psychomotor skills to facilitate quality, efficient diagnostic and therapeutic interventions;
  • Provide learning skills and tools to promote learning throughout career and lifetime.

Employment Outlook

Veterinary technicians typically conduct clinical work in a private practice under the supervision of a veterinarian, performing various medical tests in a laboratory setting along with treating medical conditions and diseases in animals.

They may work in research facilities, where they may administer medications orally or topically, prepare samples for laboratory examinations, and record information on an animal’s genealogy, diet, weight, medications, food intake, and clinical signs of pain and distress. They may also work with other scientists in medical-related fields such as gene therapy and cloning. Other opportunities exist in biomedical research, wildlife medicine, the military, livestock management, education, or pharmaceutical sales.

Criminal convictions may restrict or prevent student participation with internships and employment in this industry.

Faculty & Support

Dr. Dzyban is a veterinarian that is board certified in small animal internal medicine. She has fifteen years clinical experience in general and specialty small animal practice and four years experience as an instructor and specialist consultant. As a veterinary internist, she is adept in ultrasound, endoscopy, parenteral nutrition and chemotherapy techniques. Publications include "Peritoneal Dialysis" in Kirk's Current Veterinary Therapy, "Peritoneal Dialysis" in the Journal of Emergency & Critical Care, "Cardiac Tamponade in Cavia Porcellus" in the Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association, and "Granulomatous Meningoencephalitis" in the Journal of Veterinary Radiologists. She is a recipient of the Sue Tidball Award for Creative Humanity and an instructor for the American Red Cross. One of her life goals is to inspire excellence in animal care in veterinarians, veterinary technicians and animal owners.

  • Degrees and Credentials

    Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, St. Paul - 2008

    Diplomate in Small Animal Internal Medicine, American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine - 2008

    B.S., Veterinary Science, University of Minnesota, St. Paul - 2008

    WA Professional Technical Certification - 2008

Laura Doss has been at BTC for 10 years in the roles of Academic & Career Advisor, Student Navigator, Instructor, Completion Coach and now College Navigator for the Allied Health Programs. Laura earned her Bachelor of Science while serving in the US Army and stationed in Germany and her Master of Education while stationed at Fort Sill, OK. Her initial education and training was in the mental health field before moving into education. Outside of work, Laura likes to spend time with her four kids, walking the trails, cuddling with her tiny dog and reading a ton of books!