picture of a dog and cat

Veterinary technology is a rewarding career that allows those passionate about animal healthcare to serve a great purpose in life by making sure the pets of others are healthy and able to provide companionship to the individuals that own them.

Sometimes there aren't a lot of choices when it comes to local colleges. Maybe you'd rather go to a more prestigious college or maybe you're just not ready to attend an on-campus college for financial or emotional reasons.

The good news is that there are colleges that offer everything you'll need to become an "animal nurse" regardless of where you live in the United States.

Which School Do I Choose?

Veterinary Technician

If you type "online vet tech programs" into a search engine, you'll get hundreds of colleges that offer the program online. It's hard to know which school is the best if you're not sure what you're looking for. There are key factors you'll want to look for when determining what facility is best for you.

Is The School Accredited?

A college that's accredited means that if you choose to enroll but decide to go to a different school later for any reason, then you'll be able to take your credits with you. Schools that aren't accredited are pretty much forcing you to stay at their school once you enroll. This takes away the right to change your mind.

Recognized By The AVMA

The American Veterinary Medicine Association has a list on their website of colleges recongnized for providing the required curriculum to let graduates get licensed in their state of residence.

If you find a school that interests you, make sure to check the AVMA website and select a state from the drop down menu.  




Vet tech training

San Juan College

This school has been reviewed by hundreds of graduates and current students. I'm currently a student here as well. Even though the main campus is in New Mexico, I have numbers and emails for every person I need and it was all provided by the school. 

The online application process is fast and easy. The process was fast because the staff there got to my application within 72 hours. There is no waiting for weeks to hear from them like with a lot of educational institutions.

They provide you with a student email and tell you what you need to do step by step what needs to be done before registering for classes. Students are required to talk to their student advisors before their first semester as well as at the end of each semester to discuss which schedule would be best and to address any questions they may have.

It is AVMA recognized and accredited and makes finding an internship site easy. You'll have to locate your own, but they do provide all the paperwork required to get your site of choice approved. 

Financial aid is available for those who qualify and the financial aid office makes sure to explain the process before they start anything. They make sure you know what you're getting into and what all the terms mean which shows they care about their students. 

This is a great choice for students who are unemployed and relyiing on financial aid. They offer the Veterinary Technology certifcate as well as the Associate of Applied Science in veterinary technology. Part time students can expect to complete the associate's program in 3 1/2 years and full time students can expect to complete the program in 2 years.

Curriculum covers healthcare for cats, dogs, exotic animals such as lizards and zoo animals, horse care and small lab animal care (yep, rats). This school gives you the education needed to be successful in this career.

The website is pretty crowded because they have so much going on like announcements and student campus activities, but they make it easy to find the section for online students. The site is bright and very appealing to the eye and you'll have to be careful not to spend too much time there if you're short on time. 

exotic animal photo

Penn Foster College

For people looking to get into veterinary technology without worrying about student loans and other forms of financial aid, Penn Foster College is for you. Unlike most colleges that cost thousands of dollars, this college costs less than $2,000 and is also recognized by the AVMA as well as accredited. 

The good thing is that they offer students a month to month payment plan. Monthly payments can be as low as $49 per month. It's self paced and you're allowed to make one 6 month extension per semester in case you need more time to learn the material.

The $2,000 includes textbooks and study materials so you don't have to worry about purchasing books through the school bookstore. If you choose to pay the full price at once you'll actually get a discount so your education costs even less. Unlike San Juan College, Penn Foster will take care of finding your internship sites so you only need to worry about telling them which location is most convenient for you and getting there on time.

They also have a certificate program as well as an associate's degree available. The associate's degree takes 2 years on average. Unlike San Juan College, students can get done sooner or later;however, finishing before 2 years is up is extremely rare.

The school sends you a brochure after you request more information online and it gives you details of the classes you'll be taking. You pay for classes via credit card or money order. I'm not sure if they give you a reminder or if it's something you have to mark on your calendar, but it'd be a good idea to just write it down on your calendar just in case. It's a good habit to have.

The website is a little boring and looks cheap which is why I decided to make sure to do my research about their program. It's actually one of the most recommended online vet tech programs online.

Boring site aside, it's easy to navigate and gives you the information you're looking for quickly by providing easy to see pages with large text. They've focused more on providing helpful information rather than spending their time worrying about site design. This is probably why they are so popular. They're clearly very professional.