1 answer

What is it like working with exotic animals?

1
100% of 1 Pros
Asked Viewed 59 times

I am a Senior student at William J. Brennan High school looking for information on becoming a veterinarian. I specifically want to pursue becoming an Exotic Animal Vet and wouldn't mind traveling at the beginning of my career to do so but i would like to know my chances and what i must do to accomplish this.
#veterinarian #veterinary #animals #veterinary-medicine #animal-health #exotic
#wildlife

1
100% of 1 Pros

1 answer

Courtney’s Answer

0
Updated

I'm excited that you want to work with exotic animals. I'm the head zookeeper at a private exotic zoo in the Houston area and I love working with exotics. The thing about being a zookeeper is that in big zoos, you typically specialize in only one species. For example, you'll be the keeper for just the giraffes or just the elephants. The zoo I'm at is smaller so I have the opportunity to work with all the animals (bears, wolves, hyenas, primates, reptiles, bearcats, large cats, birds of prey, otters, tropical birds, hoofstock, etc). Being one of the head zookeepers, it's necessary for me to be trained on all the animals so that I can step in and take care of them when their normal keeper is on vacation or out sick.

When I was in high school I did an internship at both a vet clinic and the zoo I now work at. I found the vet clinic internship to be boring as we mostly just saw cats and dogs all day long and I found it depressing to sit with pet owners while their pet was being euthanized. Being a zookeeper is hard work but find it very rewarding to be cleaning out a primates enclosure while they're hanging on my shoulder grooming my hair. Zookeeping is not all fun and games though...in addition to building enclosures, creating enrichment games, cutting diets, administering medications, hand raising animals, etc. we're also responsible for cleaning and repairing the enclosures and we work in 100+ degree weather, rain, etc. I still prefer it over working with domestic animals.

Here's a website that has suggestions of jobs that involve working with exotic animals. https://study.com/articles/Careers_Working_with_Exotic_Animals_Job_Options_and_Requirements.html

To know that you managed to get yourself a great position is a lot of motivation on it's own. I am prepared to work, and have been since i was four years old! I believe it's worth it. Living in San Antonio I am well aware of the hot and humid working conditions, and that is actually a major bonus! I hope to be a head zookeeper like you, even if I have to study more on other animals. I don't want to just care for one type of animal, I want to care for them all. thank you for your comments! I really appreciate them more than you know! Jordan F.
0