Veterinary Assistant Salary (United States)

Veterinary Assistants in the United States ordinarily take home approximately $10.54 per hour. Pay ranges from $8.38 per hour on the low end to $14.49 on the higher side. Compensation for this group is mainly affected by location, but tenure and the specific company are influential factors as well. 42 percent report receiving medical coverage from their employers and about one-fifth collect dental insurance. For the most part, Veterinary Assistants enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. The data for this snapshot was collected from individuals who took PayScale's salary survey.
Veterinary Assistant Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$19,355 - $47,166
(Median)
19K
28K
33K
47K
MEDIAN: $27,782
10%
50%
75%
90%
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Veterinary Assistant Salary (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$8.38 - $14.49
(Median)
8
12
14
MEDIAN: $10
10%
75%
90%
Add this chart to your site: 640px    300px

National Salary Data

 (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$16K$32K$48K
Salary
$19,355 - $47,166  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $510  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$17,727 - $31,832  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 39
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$8$16$24
Hourly Rate
$8.38 - $14.49  
   
Overtime
$12.09 - $21.65  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$16K$32K$48K
Bonus
$0.00 - $510  
   
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$17,727 - $31,832  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 3 Sep 2014 | Individuals Reporting: 708
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Job Description for Veterinary Assistant

The veterinary assistant primarily assists veterinarians in a practice with animal care. Often, it involves working side by side with the veterinarian to administer vaccinations, draw blood for testing, or otherwise generally assist in examinations and care. In certain situations, they are called upon to assist the veterinarian in surgical procedures as well.
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Veterinary Assistant Tasks
  • Maintain animals, including feeding, cleaning, administering drugs and documenting care.
  • Support examinations by obtaining data and ensuring a safe environment.
  • Inventory equipment and medications to determine ordering needs and availability.
  • Interact with animals, staff and owners to determine care plans move animals to designated locations.
  • Train owners in drug administration, preventative maintenance and post-procedure care.

Common Career Paths for Veterinary Assistant

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While not commonly seen, Veterinary Assistants who transition into a Veterinarian position may earn an additional $47K per year. Veterinary Technicians or Veterinary Technicians are common next-step roles for Veterinary Assistants moving up in the field, where annual pay increases by $5,643 or $5,027, respectively.

Veterinary Assistant Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Veterinary Assistant

Survey takers reported data on just two employers and both offer similar salaries. At VCA Animal Hospital, workers typically make around $23,137 while Banfield, The Pet Hospital offers annual pay of about $23,111.

Popular Skills for Veterinary Assistant

Veterinary Assistants report using a diverse set of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in Phlebotomy, Radiology, Anesthesia, and Surgery are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts of 7 percent, 5 percent, 5 percent, and 5 percent, respectively. At the other end of the pay range are skills like Medicine / Surgery and animal restraint. Those educated in Anesthesia tend to be well-versed in Phlebotomy.

Pay by Experience Level for Veterinary Assistant

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Though Veterinary Assistants can expect regular salary growth as they advance in their careers, experience does not seem to be a strong driver of pay increase. Salaries start at $21K, which grows to $25K after five to 10 years. Pay amounts to $28K after 10 to 20 years. A 20-year tenure heralds decreased salary growth, and Veterinary Assistants who have made it this far report earning around $29K per year. Experienced employees who have 10-20 years of experience make up 11 percent of the workforce; inexperienced individuals who have been working for less than one year comprise less than 10 percent, and senior people with more than 20 years under their belt fill out the remaining less than five percent. Between one and nine years of experience is the norm for people in this field—most of those surveyed fit this bill.

Pay Difference By Location

New York
up arrow 38%
Seattle
up arrow 25%
Raleigh
up arrow 10%
Colorado Springs
up arrow 8%
San Diego
up arrow 5%
National Average
$23,000
Tacoma
up arrow 1%
Richmond
up arrow 2%
Indianapolis
up arrow 4%
Charlotte
up arrow 4%
Houston
up arrow 8%
Chicago
up arrow 8%
Portland
up arrow 10%
Milwaukee
up arrow 10%
Larger circles over a city indicate a job is popular in that location.
For Veterinary Assistants, working in the bustling city of New York has its advantages, including an above-average pay rate. Veterinary Assistants can also look forward to large paychecks in cities like Seattle (+25 percent), Raleigh (+10 percent), Colorado Springs (+8 percent), and San Diego (+5 percent). In Milwaukee, salaries are 10 percent below the national average and represent the lowest-paying market. Workers in Portland and Houston earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (-10 percent and -8 percent).

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Experience Affects Veterinary Assistant Salaries

Late-Career
up arrow 26%
National Average
$23,000

Skills That Affect Veterinary Assistant Salaries

Radiology
up arrow 5%
Surgery
up arrow 3%
Customer Service
up arrow 1%
Oral / Verbal Communication
up arrow 1%
National Average
$23,000
Animal Care
up arrow 1%
animal restraint
up arrow 8%
Medicine / Surgery
up arrow 12%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied Image
Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5 based on 148 votes.

Gender

Female
90%
female alumni
 
Male
10%
male alumni

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
9%
1-4 years
55%
5-9 years
21%
10-19 years
11%
20 years or more
5%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 42% dental benefits Dental: 21%
vision benefits Vision: 14% employee benefits None: 57%