Animal technician

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Animal technologist

Animal technicians look after animals in laboratories.

Salary Range: £13,000 to £40,000

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You can get into this job through:

  • a university course
  • a college course
  • an apprenticeship
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You could do a higher national diploma or degree in:

  • pharmacology
  • biology
  • animal studies
  • animal care

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 2 or 3 A levels, or equivalent, including a science, for a degree
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You could do a Level 3 Diploma in:

  • animal care
  • animal studies
  • applied science
  • animal management

Entry requirements

You may need:

  • 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, for a level 3 course
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You could get into this job through an animal technologist advanced apprenticeship.

Entry requirements

You’ll usually need:

  • 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths, for an advanced apprenticeship

More information

Career tips

Working with animals or in a lab may help improve your chances of finding a job or training.

You could get work experience:

  • on a farm
  • in kennels, an animal welfare centre or zoo
  • in a laboratory setting

Further information

You’ll find out more about careers and training from the Institute of Animal Technology.

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Skills and knowledge

You’ll need:

  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • the ability to work well with others
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • the ability to use your initiative
  • sensitivity and understanding
  • customer service skills
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • excellent verbal communication skills
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device
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Day-to-day tasks

Your day-to-day duties might include:

  • providing exercise, food and water
  • carrying out regular observations
  • making sure that animals are clean, comfortable and behaving as expected
  • controlling heating, lighting and humidity
  • monitoring weight and growth
  • keeping accurate records

Working environment

You could work at a research facility.

Your working environment may be outdoors some of the time.

You may need to wear protective clothing.

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With experience, you could become a senior animal technologist, unit or section supervisor or manager. 

You could also specialise in breeding, immunology or training.