The Pros and Cons of a Career Working With Animals
Mankind would not enjoy the life it does without animals. People and animals have been connected for the entire length of their histories. There is evidence that the precursor to today’s dog congregated at the edge of man’s earliest settlements, eating together, hunting together and staying safe against the dangers of the outside world. Much has changed over those thousands of years, but animals and people are still intertwined. That’s why a career working with animals can be so rewarding. Whether you find yourself in wildlife conservation, stationed in the jungles of South America or as a veterinary technician in a community shelter, you’ll surely find a lot to be thankful for. But like most careers, not every aspect is perfect. Here is a look at the pros and cons of a career working with animals.
First and foremost, you’ll have the chance to make a real difference in the world every day you get up and go to work. People are emotionally invested in their pets, and if you can make their furry family member healthier, safer or happier you’ll likely be a hero in their eyes. In conservation and protection you could literally work to help an endangered species stave off extinction, a task that causes a ripple effect you can’t even fully describe. That’s the sort of difference few people get to make in their careers.
With that as the basis of your efforts, you’ll find working with animals to be incredibly rewarding. The tasks you are confronted with each day will vary greatly. Some vets work with a number of species, so you might be treating a dog at one moment and a horse the next. In other parts of the world you could find yourself tracking the population of herds of rhino or trying to determine why a migration pattern is changing. You certainly won’t spend much time chained to a desk and computer. And the rewards inherent with this variety are pretty easy to see.
It is easy to forget, however, that working with animals is far from glamorous. Most of your days won’t involve saving lives but treating simple ailments, washing a pee-stained floor or looking over miles of fences to insure the safety of a herd. Nobody’s going to give you a medal for this work, or even offer thanks in many instances. With all of the small tasks presented to you, it might be hard to see the long-term difference you are making. And much of it won’t tax you in a major way, perhaps leaving you thinking anyone at all could do the same work, just as well or even better. You’ll need to leave those gripes behind if you want to be successful in this career.
Although incredible success does come for some in the animal industry, the vast majority of people won’t make a very good living. Working with animals is all about passion. It’s not something you get into for the fame and fortune, but that commitment might get tested from time to time. And hands-on animal education isn’t cheap. You’ll invest a lot of time and money just to ready yourself for the career. Make sure you research your particular field in detail before you get too far along. As long as you know what you’re in for, you’ll figure out a way to make it work.