How to Become a Veterinary Technician in South Dakota

How to Become a Vet Tech

Jobs in the vet field are lucrative in South Dakota, and this is also the case for vet tech jobs.

If you want to be a vet tech in this state, check out the requirements below.

Veterinary Technician Job Description and Duties in South Dakota

Vet techs are generally supervised by a veterinarian and complete daily tasks such as:

  • Administering medications
  • Taking x-rays,
  • Processing tissue samples,
  • Assisting in surgery and emergency care
  • Performing lab tests
  • Teeth cleaning,
  • Electrocardiography,
  • Bandaging,
  • Wound cleaning,
  • Maintaining detailed and accurate records

Of course, your job duties will vary according to the facility you are working in.

Education and Training Required for Veterinary Technicians in South Dakota

You will need some experience with animals in order to work as a vet tech in this state.

Those who don’t have experience can enroll in a training program.

The best way to do it to get a Veterinary Technology Associate’s Degree of Applied Science degree.

You can also choose a Bachelor’s degree instead.

An Associate’s degree lasts for 2 years, while a Bachelor’s degree lasts for 4 to 5 years.

The program you opt for has to be accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association.

You can also pursue a degree in Animal Science with vet tech specialization as an alternate option.

In order to get the practice you need, you can enroll in an internship or an externship.

Look at the table below for an idea of the schools available in South Dakota.

School Name Address
National American University 5301 South Highway 16, Rapid City, South Dakota 57701-2823
Globe University 5101 S Broadband Ln, Sioux Falls, South Dakota 57108

To apply for a vet tech program, you have to:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have a high school diploma or GED
  • Complete some classes right before enrolling in the degree program
  • 2 letters of recommendation
    • One of them must be from a veterinarian.
  • Health insurance
  • Buying a medical malpractice policy

The theory part includes topics such as:

  • Introduction to veterinary technology
  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Emergency care and first aid
  • Pathology
  • Anesthesiology
  • Radiology
  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology
  • Parasitology
  • Toxicology
  • Nutrition

The topics included in practice are:

  • Medical Terminology
  • Basic Comparative Animal Anatomy and Physiology;
  • Veterinary Office Procedures;
  • Basic Pharmacology;
  • Practical Animal Nutrition;
  • Nursing Care and Handling of Animals;
  • Animal Behavior;
  • Applied Radiography;
  • Applied Anesthesiology;
  • Applied Clinical Laboratory Procedures;
  • Principles and Practices of Medical and Surgical Assistance;
  • Animal Diseases.

You will also have to attend 20 hours of radiation safety.

The last semester is generally a preceptorship.

Becoming a Licensed Veterinary Technician in South Dakota

In South Dakota, vet techs are getting their certifications from the American Veterinary Medical Association.

To apply, you need:

  • An application form
  • Proof you graduated from the training program described earlier
  • To pay the associated fees
    • $300 for the exam
    • $100 for the license
  • Score at least 70% on the Veterinary Technician National Examination (VTNE)

The VTNE exam has 150 questions, and you have 3 hours to answer them.

Once you pass the exam, you will get your license mailed to you in a few weeks.

The veterinary tech license has to be renewed every 24 months and requires 12 additional hours of class.

Employment and Salaries for Veterinary Technicians in South Dakota

After you receive your vet tech license, you can get hired by any facility working with animals.

These include:

  • Private clinical practices
  • Zoos
  • Veterinary teaching hospitals
  • Rescue centers
  • Wildlife or exotic animal rehabilitation centers
  • Humane societies,
  • Research facilities,
  • Feedlots,
  • Pharmaceutical companies

The largest employers in South Dakota are:

  • South Dakota Animal Rescue
  • PAWS Animal Rescue (Pierre)
  • Lakota Animal Care Project (Pine Ridge Lakota Sioux Indian Reservation)
  • Sioux Falls Area Humane Society (Sioux Falls)
  • Animal Control Division (Mitchell)
  • Heartland Humane Society (Yankton)
  • Humane Society of the Black Hills: Animal Control Welfare (Rapid City)
  • All-City Pet Care South (Sioux Falls)
Annual Salary Range:
$21K
$30K
$41K
10%
50%
90%
Annual Salary by Location:
Location Avg. Annual Salary
Sioux Falls $32,151
Rapid City $31,083
Aberdeen $29,189
Brookings $31,613
Watertown $31,613
Mitchell $31,613
Yankton $30,886
Pierre $29,726
Huron $30,401
Spearfish $30,546

Additional Information for Veterinary Technicians in South Dakota

You might need to keep updated with the industry changes.

In that case, check out the resources below:

  • American Veterinary Medical Association
  • South Dakota Veterinary Technician and Assistant Association
  • National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America
  • Academy of Veterinary Technician Anesthetists
  • Academy of Veterinary Emergency & Critical Care Technicians
  • Academy of Internal Medicine for Veterinary Technicians
  • American Association for Laboratory Animal Science

READ MORE: How to Become a Vet Tech

State Specific Information

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