In Summary - Animal Lab Technician
Videos on the Web
- Animal Lab Technician- from: Youtube Search
The Work - Animal Lab Technician
Animal technicians are responsible for the care and welfare of animals in laboratory research. Scientific research uses three million animals each year. Many scientists see the research as essential to human health and quality of life, although alternative methods and technologies are reducing the number of animals involved. Researchers have developed drugs and medicines, and improved knowledge of diseases and surgical techniques. Animal technicians must keep meticulous records detailing all procedures and developments surrounding the animals.
Research usually involves rats and mice. However, technicians may look after a wide range of animals, including rabbits, guinea pigs, dogs, cats, monkeys, farm animals, fish and insects. This means that technicians must learn to adapt to the animals' different health and nutritional needs, and patterns of behaviour.
Animal technicians carry out routine aspects of animal care. They feed and water the animals, and clean cages, rooms and equipment. They make sure animals are comfortable and that they are not suffering unnecessarily.
Technicians use nutritional knowledge to prepare special diets. They are in daily contact with animals, and are able to detect early signs of disease, illness, and changes in behaviour.
Most commonly reported Work Tasks
- Hold or restrain animals during veterinary procedures.
- Clean and maintain kennels, animal holding areas, examination or operating rooms, or animal loading or unloading facilities to control the spread of disease.
- Fill medication prescriptions.
- Assist veterinarians in examining animals to determine the nature of illnesses or injuries.
- Monitor animals recovering from surgery and notify veterinarians of any unusual changes or symptoms.
- Clean, maintain, and sterilize instruments or equipment.
- Examine animals to detect behavioral changes or clinical symptoms that could indicate illness or injury.
- Educate or advise clients on animal health care, nutrition, or behavior problems.
- Administer medication, immunizations, or blood plasma to animals as prescribed by veterinarians.
- Collect laboratory specimens, such as blood, urine, or feces for testing.
Most commonly reported Work Activities
- Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
- Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
- Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
- Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
- Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
- Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
- Assisting and Caring for Others Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
- Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
- Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
- Performing for or Working Directly with the Public Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.
Interests - Animal Lab Technician
This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:
Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.
Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
The Social person's interests focus on interacting with the people in their environment. In all cases, the Social person enjoys the personal contact with other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.
Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.
The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with sophiscticated technology. These types prefer mentally stimulating environments and often pay close attention to developments in their chosen field.
You must have a thorough and methodical approach to monitoring animals. Good attention to detail is important, for example, when measuring feed, or the height and weight of newborn animals. You must have good observation skills to identify subtle differences in an animal's behaviour. You will need good communication skills, to express your findings and concerns clearly, either to other technicians or to research scientists.
Physical fitness is important because the work involves standing, lifting and carrying. This type of work may be unsuitable if you have skin allergies.
Entry Requirements - Animal Lab Technician
Pay & Salary - Animal Lab Technician
Salary Range (thousands per year)* 18k - 32k
Last Updated: April, 2017
* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
Labour Market Updates - Animal Lab Technician
Useful Contacts - Animal Lab Technician
Teagasc - Irish Agriculture and Food Development Authority
Institute of Animal Technology
Veterinary Council of Ireland