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Veterinary technicians assist veterinarians in a variety of animal care facilities. Their job responsibilities typically include assistance with dental care, examinations, surgical procedures, and the administration of anesthesia. Vet techs may also need to interact with pet owners, and perform laboratory or administrative functions.

California Veterinary Technician Schools

Several schools in California offer veterinary technician training programs for students interested in pursuing a degree in the field. Here are five schools with vet tech programs:

  • Yuba College: The two-year vet tech program at Yuba College culminates in an Associate in Science (AS) degree. The program is designed to prepare students to successfully complete both the California state RVT exam and the AVMA's National Veterinary Technician exam.

  • Foothill College: The Foothill College vet tech program is the only AVMA-accredited program in the Bay Area. It grants graduates an AS degree and prepares them for state and national licensing exams.

  • San Joaquin Valley College: The SJVC program in Fresno helps prepare students to sit for state certification exams. The SJVC vet tech program in Bakersfield requires that students complete a program of supervised field practice to be eligible for certification. Both programs culminate in AS degrees.

  • Consumnes River College: The CRC program in veterinary technology is AVMA-accredited and prepares students to sit for the state and national certification exams.

  • Carrington College: The Carrington College vet tech programs in Citrus Heights, Pleasant Hill, Pomona, Sacramento, San Jose, San Leandro, and Stockton are accredited and make graduates eligible to take state and national certification exams.

What to Expect from California Veterinary Technician Programs

The goal of most veterinary technician programs is to prepare students to work in veterinary practices, hospitals, clinics, zoos, farms, biomedical research facilities, or university laboratories. The programs typically provide students with training in laboratory techniques, surgical procedures, and general animal care. They may also offer opportunities for hands-on field experience through externships or clinical work in veterinary clinics or hospitals.

While enrolled in a vet tech program, students can expect to learn about:

  • Animal anatomy
  • Surgical procedures
  • Examination procedures
  • Medication requirements
  • Client interaction
  • Administrative procedures

Veterinary technician programs usually require two years of class work and field experience. To prepare for a vet tech program, students typically need to have taken introductory college-level courses in biology and chemistry.

California Veterinary Technician Licensing and Certification

To work as a veterinary technician in California, techs must be certified as a Registered Veterinary Technician by the state. A tech can be RVT certified by completing an accredited vet tech program and taking a board-approved state vet tech exam. Alternatively, techs may be certified in California if they hold an approved certification from another state.

Graduates of AVMA-accredited veterinary technician programs can choose to become certified by taking and passing the Veterinary Technician National Examination.

Resources for Veterinary Technicians in California

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Results:  10
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Programs
  • Degree - Veterinary Technology
  • Many programs require externships, allowing students to gain real-world experience.
  • Approved A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) since 1984.
  • Offers 22 accelerated, career-focused program options including business administration, medical assisting, and more.
  • Regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).
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Bakersfield
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Programs
  • Veterinary Technology Alternate Route - Certificate
  • Veterinary Technology - Associates
  • A Los Angeles-based private college offering programs in medical sciences, legal studies, and graphic design since 1985.
  • Has weekend programs, including certified  veterinary technology, nurse assistant, and hemodialysis technician.
  • Showcases visual communication students’ artwork and design through campus magazine.
  • 3 campuses in Southern California.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).
Programs
  • MSN - Informatics (Online)
  • MSN – Advanced Generalist (Online)
  • RN to MSN - Advanced Generalist (Online)
  • At West Coast University, your education can pave the way to your healthcare career
  • With West Coast University, you can choose to study healthcare online or any one of the 6 campuses located in California, Texas or Florida
  • West Coast University has developed programs with learning options to work around the demands of your life
Programs
  • Bachelor of Science in Health Sciences
  • Master of Science in Health Sciences
  • Non-profit university accredited by WASC Senior Commission
  • Professors with real-world experience and student centered approach
  • Flexible, fully online degree programs responding to the market needs
  • All courses are offered six times a year with clear path to completion and reduced time-to-degree
  • No additional costs for textbooks or other fees
  • Personal support from application to graduation leading to high retention and graduation rates
Programs
  • Dental Assisting
  • Offers a free trial period so students can attend classes before paying tuition.
  • Provides blended courses that combine traditional classroom instruction with online learning.
  • Lets students connect with peers at any time, and instructors during office hours with online chat rooms.
  • Gives students the chance to participate in externships and clinical training work under the general supervision of college staff.
  • Has accelerated programs that allow students to take the same coursework in a shorter timeframe.
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Long Beach
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Programs
  • Associate of Science in Nursing
  • Offers programs in nursing, medical assisting, pharmacy technology, dental assisting, and more.
  • Six Campuses across Northern CA: Fremont, San Jose, Sacramento, S. San Francisco, Hayward, and Concord.
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges, with programmatic approvals from the California Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians and the Board of Registered Nursing.
  • Approved by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) with an A+ rating since 2010.
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Concord
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Programs
  • Healthcare Administration (BS)
  • Offers several scholarship opportunities for students who qualify.
  • Laptop computers are issued to each student at the beginning of their program.
  • Provides programs in health care, business, information technology, and graphic arts.
  • Respiratory Therapy program is accredited by the Commission on Accreditation for Respiratory Care (CoARC).
  • Accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).

Our family of non-profit colleges admits students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin.

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San Diego
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Programs
  • Professional Medical Assistant
  • A part of the Select Education Group (SEG).
  • Offers several scholarship and financial aid opportunities for students who qualify.
  • California campuses accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC), and accreditation for the Salem campus from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET).
  • 4 Campuses located in Clovis, Modesto, and Redding in California, and Salem, Oregon.
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Clovis
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Programs
  • A.S. - Healthcare Management
  • Offers special tuition pricing for Veterans, Active Duty Military and spouses/qualifying dependents of all Active Duty, National Guard and Reserves.
  • Works closely with an advisory board from the medical community to ensure that their curriculum, equipment and instruction are current.
  • Allows students to complete assignments on the go with its Blackboard Learn mobile app.
  • Gives online students live student support for technical or course questions.
  • Has campus locations in Florida as well as online learning programs.
Programs
  • Master of Public Health

Simmons’ online Master of Public Health program, MPH@Simmons, is designed to give you the real-world skills you need to address health inequity on a local, national, and global scale. The MPH@Simmons program explores the core areas of public health: epidemiology, biostatistics, health policy and health services, environmental health, and social/behavioral health. Additionally, the practice-based curriculum incorporates courses specifically designed to help you develop leadership and advocacy skills.

The program is delivered online through a blend of live online classes and self-paced course work. Additionally, you’ll participate in public health service-learning experiences during your time in the program, giving you relevant, on-ground experience.

More California Veterinary Technician Schools

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

School Name
Campus
Highest Award
Enrolled
Bakersfield
Associate
17,405
Visalia
Associate
11,697
Sacramento
Associate
12,967
Los Altos Hills
Associate
18,132
Salinas
Associate
9,890
Woodland Hills
Associate
19,526
Modesto
Associate
18,546
Walnut
Associate
29,842
Chula Vista
Associate
813
San Diego
Associate
21,437
Fresno
Associate
675
Santa Rosa
Associate
25,626
Redding
Associate
9,102
Marysville
Associate
9,904

Job Popularity in Metro Areas for Vet Techs

The map below shows job statistics for the career type by metro area, for California. A table below the map shows job popularity and salaries across the state.

Metro Areas Rated for Popularity for:
Vet Techs

Listed below are metro areas ranked by the popularity of jobs for Vet Techs relative to the population of the city. Salary data was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2014-24 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; 2014-24 State Occupational Projections, Projections Central, projectionscentral.com

Metro Area
Jobs
Annual Median Salary
Bakersfield 80 $39,070
Chico 50 $37,280
Fresno 150 $33,240
Sacramento 1180 $29,840
Roseville 1180 $29,840
Arden 1180 $29,840
Arcade 1180 $29,840
Salinas 80 $40,020
Los Angeles 2620 $38,720
Long Beach 2620 $38,720
Anaheim 2620 $38,720
Modesto 170 $29,810
Oxnard 300 $36,610
Thousand Oaks 300 $36,610
Ventura 300 $36,610
Redding 80 $31,610
Riverside 580 $39,840
San Bernardino 580 $39,840
Ontario 580 $39,840
San Diego -2222 $43,240
Carlsbad -2222 $43,240
San Francisco 1140 $40,040
Oakland 1140 $40,040
Hayward 1140 $40,040
Stockton 200 $29,320
Lodi 200 $29,320
San Jose 430 $41,270
Sunnyvale 430 $41,270
Santa Clara 430 $41,270
Vallejo 100 $31,200
Fairfield 100 $31,200
Visalia 60 $26,720
Porterville 60 $26,720
Yuba City 30 $35,050
San Luis Obispo 50 $39,060
Paso Robles 50 $39,060
Arroyo Grande 50 $39,060
Santa Cruz 120 $43,980
Watsonville 120 $43,980
Santa Maria 100 $41,150
Santa Barbara 100 $41,150
Santa Rosa 310 $44,660

Sources:

  1. Veterinary Technology, Yuba College, http://vettech.yccd.edu/
  2. Veterinary Technology, Foothill College, http://www.foothill.fhda.edu/bio/programs/vettech/
  3. Veterinary Technology, San Joaquin Valley College, http://www.sjvc.edu/programs/medical-and-dental/veterinary-technology
  4. Veterinary Technology, Consumnes River College, http://crc.losrios.edu/areas/ct/vt
  5. Veterinary Technology, Carrington College, http://carrington.edu/degrees/veterinary-technician/

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