Animal care specialists take care of the wellbeing of animals at veterinarian offices, shelters, laboratories that use animal testing, kennels, or any other place where many animals are kept. Animal care specialists take care of basic duties such as feeding animals, grooming them, and making sure that their living spaces are clean. If they are working with a veterinarian, they can perform basic medical tasks like giving medication and assisting during surgery. They take care of administrative duties like maintaining patient logs and interact with customers at a vet's office or animal shelter.

While some animal care specialists have a bachelor's degree in animal science or a related field, many are able to succeed with only a high school diploma. Some previous experience working with animals, even as a volunteer, is also helpful.

Animal care specialists earn an average salary of $31,670 a year, but most are not in this field for the money. They do their job because they love animals.

What Does an Animal Care Specialist Do

There are certain skills that many animal care specialists have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed decision-making skills, problem-solving skills and communication skills.

Learn more about what an Animal Care Specialist does

How To Become an Animal Care Specialist

If you're interested in becoming an animal care specialist, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 46.5% of animal care specialists have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 2.5% of animal care specialists have master's degrees. Even though some animal care specialists have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Animal Care Specialist Career Paths

Average Salary for an Animal Care Specialist

Animal Care Specialists in America make an average salary of $59,197 per year or $28 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $155,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $22,000 per year.
Average Animal Care Specialist Salary
$59,197 Yearly
$28.46 hourly
$22,000
10 %
$59,000
Median
$155,000
90 %

What Am I Worth?

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Animal Care Specialist Education

Animal Care Specialist Majors

14.6 %

Animal Care Specialist Degrees

Bachelors

46.5 %

Associate

22.8 %

High School Diploma

20.7 %

Top Colleges for Animal Care Specialists

1. Cornell University

Ithaca, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,188
Enrollment
15,105

2. Ohio State University

Columbus, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,726
Enrollment
45,769

3. University of Florida

Gainesville, FL • Private

In-State Tuition
$6,381
Enrollment
34,564

4. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

5. University of Maryland - College Park

College Park, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$10,595
Enrollment
30,184

6. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

7. University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

Minneapolis, MN • Private

In-State Tuition
$14,760
Enrollment
31,451

8. University of Georgia

Athens, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,830
Enrollment
29,474

9. Lincoln Memorial University

Harrogate, TN • Private

In-State Tuition
$22,010
Enrollment
1,861

10. Purdue University

West Lafayette, IN • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,992
Enrollment
33,495

Top Skills For an Animal Care Specialist

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 23.8% of animal care specialists listed animal care on their resume, but soft skills such as decision-making skills and problem-solving skills are important as well.

Choose From 10+ Customizable Animal Care Specialist Resume templates

Zippia allows you to choose from different easy-to-use Animal Care Specialist templates, and provides you with expert advice. Using the templates, you can rest assured that the structure and format of your Animal Care Specialist resume is top notch. Choose a template with the colors, fonts & text sizes that are appropriate for your industry.

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Animal Care Specialist Demographics

Animal Care Specialist Gender Distribution

Female
Female
70%
Male
Male
30%

After extensive research and analysis, Zippia's data science team found that:

  • Among animal care specialists, 70.3% of them are women, while 29.7% are men.

  • The most common race/ethnicity among animal care specialists is White, which makes up 87.7% of all animal care specialists.

  • The most common foreign language among animal care specialists is Spanish at 66.0%.

Online Courses For Animal Care Specialist That You May Like

Advertising Disclosure  The courses listed below are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the course, we may receive a commission.
Essentials of Palliative Care
coursera

This course starts you on your journey of integrating primary palliative care into your daily lives. You will learn what palliative care is, how to communicate with patients, show empathy, and practice difficult conversations. You will learn how to screen for distress and provide psychosocial support. You will learn about goals of care and advance care planning and how to improve your success with having these conversations with patients. Finally, you will explore important cultural consideratio...

What is Palliative Care?
coursera

Palliative care provides invaluable help for patients living with serious or life-limiting illness and their family caregivers. Palliative care should be part of healthcare services to improve quality of life, the ability to tolerate and benefit from treatment and improve survival. In this course, you will learn about the nature of suffering and how this concept can help you understand the experience of people living with serious illness. Next, you will learn skills to more effectively communica...

Palliative Care Always Capstone Course
coursera

The Palliative Care Always Capstone course is designed to let you test your knowledge about palliative and help others understand the value of palliative care, while showing your creative side. In this course, you will impact community awareness about palliative care, promote self-care and wellness, show-off your communication skills in a virtual environment, and finish the course off by proving your thoughts on ways to offer psychosocial support to a patient and family...

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Best States For an Animal Care Specialist

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as an animal care specialist. The best states for people in this position are Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and Rhode Island. Animal care specialists make the most in Maryland with an average salary of $94,173. Whereas in New Jersey and New York, they would average $83,672 and $83,247, respectively. While animal care specialists would only make an average of $81,214 in Rhode Island, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. New York

Total Animal Care Specialist Jobs:
1,830
Highest 10% Earn:
$184,000
Location Quotient:
1.56 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. Maine

Total Animal Care Specialist Jobs:
183
Highest 10% Earn:
$179,000
Location Quotient:
1.5 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. New Jersey

Total Animal Care Specialist Jobs:
915
Highest 10% Earn:
$184,000
Location Quotient:
1.26 Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
Full List Of Best States For Animal Care Specialists

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Top Animal Care Specialist Employers

Most Common Employers For Animal Care Specialist

Rank  Company  Average Salary  Hourly Rate  Job Openings  
1Covance$144,628$69.537
2Sanofi Genzyme$136,565$65.668
3HALO Animal Rescue$122,714$59.0025
4Spca$106,331$51.127
5Rainforest$86,163$41.4226
6Tony La Russa's Animal Rescue Foundation$80,326$38.6212
7Halifax Humane Society$67,898$32.6414
8Fossil Rim Wildlife Center$62,647$30.126
9Miami-Dade County$53,599$25.7711
10Salt Lake County$52,100$25.056

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