Vet Tech – Top Online School Programs for Certification, and General Info

Do you love animals and want to help ensure their health and safety? Becoming a vet tech, also known as a veterinarian technician, may be for you.

What is a vet tech?

A vet tech, a veterinary technician, is the assistant to the primary veterinarian. The vet tech is like the nurse to a doctor. Vet techs deal in animal health.


To become a vet tech you need at least an Associates (2 years) or a Bachelors degree (4 years). Some places take a certificate.

vet tech

How to become a vet tech

The requirements for becoming a vet tech can be different for each state. A right place to start is to look up the requirements in your area or the area you want to work or plan on living. An excellent resource for this information is Veterinarian Education. Click on your state to see what you need.

How long does it take to become a vet tech?

It would take about two years (Associates) or 4 years (Bachelors). This timeline is just being a typical vet tech and not one with a specialization.

Schools and Programs

In the United States, there are over 230 accredited Vet Tech Programs. Pick your state and find the nearest location.

This is a fantastic website to search to find you accredited vet tech schools and programs by location. You can find a printable list (PDF) of all certified colleges for vet techs around the world.

Online vet tech programs, Online vet tech schools, and certifications (Accredited)

Certificate – 2 years or less

  • Penn Foster Career School
  • University of Missouri

Associates – 2 years

  • Penn Foster Career School
  • Holmes Community College
  • Penn Foster College
  • Purdue University – Main Campus
  • San Juan College
  • St. Petersburg College

Bachelors – 4 years

  • St. Petersburg College
  • Tarleton State University
  • The University of Tennessee – Martin

For another list of accredited schools by the American Veterinary Association, go to their website to find more information on Distance Learning Courses and Programs approved by them.


As of 2017, the average yearly salary range of $23,819 – $35,657. Salary can change depending on location and country. If you want to make more money, you can become a vet tech specialist.

How can I become a vet tech specialist?

After you get a degree in veterinary technology and have worked for a few years in the field, you can get specialized certification in one of these areas: clinical practice, behavior, surgery, dentistry, nutrition, emergency and critical care, internal medicine, zoo medicine and many more.

Requirements (for most):

  • a degree
  • have three to five years of work experience
  • skill logs and case studies
  • Attend events for continuing education
  • pass an exam
  • letters of recommendation.


Vet techs assist veterinarians in animal hospitals, animal shelters, zoos, veterinary clinics, kennels, or rescue facilities. Your job responsibilities could be a range of anything from monitoring the progress of animals, giving medicine and anesthesia, preparing the animals for surgery, giving x-rays, and keeping track of patient history.