Many people love animals. The fact that almost 70% of US households own a pet proves this point. From your child’s first pet, probably a hamster or a goldfish, to their first cat or dog, your kids probably love the fact that they have an animal in the home, and you want to encourage their interests. To help you do that, here are three potential career paths for kids who love animals.
A rewarding career choice
If your child shows an unusually high affinity for their furry or scaly counterparts, they might be on the first steps to making animals their career. While not as glamorous as sports stars or actors, or as brave as a police officer or firefighter, a career with animals can be extremely rewarding. It’s also steady work and develops a great skillset.
Some of the most popular jobs working with animals are:
- Veterinary technician
- Marine biologist
- Animal trainer
The savior of many an animal, veterinary technicians provide medical care for all kinds of species that may come into an animal medical practice. Meanwhile, marine biologists utilize their aquatic animal knowledge and applied science to study all kinds of marine life behavior. Finally, animal trainers usually have a little more understanding than the average person when it comes to animals.
1. Veterinary technician
A highly skilled and trained assistant to veterinary surgeons, vet technicians provide a wide range of medical care before, during, and after consultation and procedures. They do so for a wide range of animals.
Following a long study at vet tech college, vet techs not only look after dogs and cats but need to know about all animals. That includes amphibians and other mammals, such as rodents, equine, and livestock.
Occasionally, vet techs will also have to provide care for exotic animals. That could be birds, reptiles, and even large arachnids, such as tarantulas.
For these reasons, if your child displays an unusual interest in all animals (not just the cuddly ones), they would probably be great on a vet team. Anesthesia, lab procedures, and even animal dentistry are examples of rewarding veterinarian jobs.
The educational program usually lasts for around two years, with options for further specialization. Many vet techs study further to become veterinary surgeons or doctors with a plan to open their own practice down the line.
2. More career paths for kids: Marine biologist
A very specialized and scientific branch of animal care and study, marine biology encapsulates oceanography on a large scale. That includes the smallest microorganisms, such as algae, the largest ocean animals, such as the blue whale, and everything in between.
Marine biologists aim to learn all there is about their behaviors, interactions, and dependencies on each other. Given current global conditions, this understanding has never been more important.
While most kids usually stick to playing with cats, dogs, and rodents, your little one may have more interest in the animals of the local rivers and any fishes you have at home. Oceans, seas, ponds, lakes, and rivers might be their natural playground.
If your child wants to learn more, many great colleges teach marine biology. Boston University claims the best marine bio course in the US, but your child should be aware that the vast amount of knowledge involved in marine biology makes it one of the most difficult subjects to learn.
The career path for kids who love animals is lengthy, but it’s worth it to do what they love. It could be a 4-year minimum animal science degree course and a further 6 years for a Ph.D. certification.
Another plus for marine biologists is getting to spend their time working in some of the world’s most beautiful places with other professionals. All while getting paid well for the privilege.
3. Animal trainer
Then there are the kinds of people who appear to be gifted at working with animals. Some are almost being able to communicate with them. From the humble dog trainer to the revered horse whisperer, animal trainers all over the world garner wide respect for influencing animal behavior.
As a result, it’s not uncommon for animal trainers to start private businesses or even work with animals for Hollywood movies. Also, dog training in affluent areas like Beverly Hills can pay a high wage.
Career paths for kids who are animal lovers
Working with animals could bring your child much satisfaction when they reach adulthood. The love of animals usually presents itself at a very young age. You may notice your kid displays this inherent ability already.
To further this ability, there are colleges that offer courses in animal training, if your child wishes to do so. They might pursue it as an established career for themselves.
It might require specialized animal training. Working with orcas, for example, will usually require a marine biology degree as well.
Whatever they decide to do, encourage them with their passion and be there through the highs and lows. Providing a supportive ear can help your child in more ways than you may ever know.