Veterinary assistant training is usually provided on the job for new employees. This is because every office has slightly different duties and policies regarding veterinary assistants, and also because there are no veterinary assistant degrees. Some industrious and devoted people who are committed to getting a veterinary assistant job desire extra training in order to ensure that a job may be acquired. Luckily, there are a variety of ways to get veterinary assistant training that require only free time.
There are certain types of classes that could be considered veterinary assistant training. A veterinary assistant often does work such as filing, taking messages, and making appointments, so a course in office skills would be very good veterinary assistant training. Also, courses that involve interaction with animals, such as a dog-training course, might be helpful in a veterinary assistant job.
Many locations use volunteers to fill the role of veterinary assistant, and this can be considered training for a real veterinary assistant job. Animal shelters and other non profits often use volunteers to do office work, as well as to clean up after animals. These jobs may not be glamorous, but they are good training for a future veterinary assistant. In order to make the most out of a volunteer job, it is important to take on duties that are similar to what one would be doing as a veterinary assistant, and to stay in one's supervisor's good graces so he or she can be used as a reference.
Some places that use volunteers require those volunteers to undergo specific training in order to work with the animals. Zoos and aquariums usually require such training, and the amount of devotion required for these jobs typically results in expertise in a very specific department. The exact information learned through this training may not be relevant to a job as a veterinary assistant, but it most certainly will show a potential employer that one can follow specific directions regarding animals.
Even if a business does not use volunteers as workers, they may be open to the idea of having an intern. This is a particularly good option for high school and college students who wish to gain specific work experience. Becoming an intern can be tiring, as it is the equivalent of having an unpaid or low-paid job. Like a job, though, it can provide valuable references for later work.
It is important to mention that any job experience in an office or reception setting can be applied to becoming a veterinary assistant. Additionally, any work done with animals, whether it is walking dogs or taking care of a hamster, can demonstrate an interest in animals. If all other methods of obtaining veterinary assistant training fail, everyday experiences in other settings can be used to improve one's prospects as a veterinary assistant.