Careers With Animals: 5 Jobs Working With Animals That Pay Well

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If you’re searching for a list of careers with animals that pay well, that means you’ve probably loved animals since before you could remember.

Sometimes the thought of going to a mundane job can be unbearable, but if you have the chance to work with animals and make a positive difference in their lives, you’ll find yourself leaping out of bed in the morning. The following are careers that allow you to make a viable living while immersing yourself in your passion for animals.

Here are our top 5 jobs with animals with a good income and lots of passion:

1. Veterinary Technician

Vet tech running through a health checklist.

Vet tech running through a health checklist.

A lot of little kids dream of working in a veterinary clinic. From experiencing the bond between a pet and their owner to the satisfaction of a successful surgery, being a vet tech is a highly rewarding career. You’ll assist in surgeries, monitor hospitalized patients, comfort grieving owners, and be your doctor’s right-hand man.

However, if you’re looking for a job where you only deal with happy endings, this isn’t the job for you. While the majority of your job will deal with happy, healthy animals who get to go home, there’s a lot of tragedy and sadness involved in the veterinary field. Something that many people can’t deal with regardless of how much income they make.

2. Dog Trainer

Labrador and trainer practicing at the park.

Labrador and trainer practicing at the park.

If you have a knack for helping your friends and family problem solve their dog’s behavioral issues, then maybe you would do well as a dog trainer. It can be difficult to start, but once you get a solid and loyal client base, you’ll find that this could be a full time job. Most dog trainers are self-educated, meaning they do their own extensive research while working closely with an experienced dog trainer.

They have attended a variety of seminars, workshops, and found a few different mentors to work with. If you want to be a dog trainer, you should find out what your niche is. Ask yourself this:

  • Do you want to train hunting dogs?
  • Help train service dogs?
  • Do you just want to help owners navigate the murky waters of separation anxiety and puppy obedience?

Once you know what you’re passionate about, you need to find a trainer that has years of experience in the niche you’re looking at.

3. Marine Biologist

Marine Biologist surveying the deep sea.

Marine Biologist surveying the deep sea.

When your passion trends towards the animals of the sea, you could be quite happy as a marine biologist. Being a marine biologist is much more than being a dolphin trainer at SeaWorld. You’ll study marine organisms (from whales to fish to sponges) in their natural environment, assessing how things like humans affect their environment and life cycles. You might inventory or make guesses on the populations of plant and animal species.

You could even work with the public to educate them on the dangers presented to threatened marine species. Marine biologists attend college and get their Bachelor’s degree at minimum, while some go on to graduate school. If you want to be a marine biologist, then you should have an interest in the conservation and biology of all marine species, not just whales, dolphins, or sea lions.

4. Pet Groomer

Groomer about to start brushing pet's hair.

Groomer about to start brushing pet’s hair.

Do you love dogs but have a bit of an artistic side? You should consider becoming a dog groomer. Groomers do much more than bathe dirty dogs and trim stray hairs. You get to help turn an owner’s dog into something clean, cuddly, and completely adorable.

If you’re even more ambitious, you can work with show dogs, providing breed-specific cuts that are necessary to help these dogs win their title. Your training can take place on the job, and some of the best groomers out there have learned as they’re working.

There are programs out there to give you the basic education needed to successfully groom a dog, and these can help you get a head start on some of the competition. Just ensure you’re willing to work with unruly dogs (and cats!) who are terrified of the blower or despise having their ears touched. You’ll require a great deal of patience in this career.

5. Zoologist

Zoo keeper petting an iguana.

Zoo keeper petting an iguana.

Is there a more magical place than a zoo? With a diverse collection of animals, endangered species, and plenty of opportunities to educate the population about conservation, what’s not to love? By definition, a zoologist is someone who studies the behaviors, origins, genetics, and life cycles of wildlife.

Many zoologists work at zoos, taking care of the animals’ basic needs, developing educational programs for both zoo staff and patrons, and organizing experimental studies.

Other zoologists work with wild animals, taking jobs in wildlife reserves to observe the animal populations or their behaviors. To become a zoologist, you must attend college where you’ll receive your Bachelor’s degree in biology or zoology. If you want to take part in studies and publish your research, you’ll probably be interested in getting your Master’s degree or even your PhD.

Love Your Job

There are endless ways you can devote your life to animals. Whether you want a career or you are simply looking for jobs working with animals that pay well, it’s clear that you want to make a difference in an animal’s life. There are countless opportunities out there for you, just make sure you’re following your heart and you’re sure to be happy with the path you choose.