Some of these details vary among zookeepers, but the average annual salary for a veterinarian at the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) in London is £56,500. A veterinary school like the one run by the RVC will teach at least four different courses at the same time, meaning your vet will graduate with a very large wage packet.
You can also work at an animal hospital in a similar fashion, which, if you’re keen, may pay about as much. And there’s always the possibility of joining a zoo or performing in a circus. As well as the salary, you’ll also expect to do some travelling around the UK and around the world in your spare time.
Are pets a luxury?
One of the biggest challenges with working in a zookeepers’ hospital is that the most glamorous and exotic animals are treated as a necessity, with few treats offered or provided. This is especially true if you’re on a regular holiday, so you’ll need to work long hours from the night to early morning. You’ll need to pack enough food in your animal transport equipment, so if you’re not doing that in one job, it might be best to stick with another. The main difference with animals on holiday is that they are allowed to socialise with the staff, rather than having to be confined and isolated.
Working with animals also means getting to know your local wildlife, as there is some good communication between staff and staff members of the zoo. This will ensure you will be provided with accurate information on the animals in your care. And if you’re lucky enough to find yourself dealing with a particular species of animal, chances are good you will be able to find out about their life-style from their natural habitat.
How does it work?
Working in a zoo will generally be similar (if not identical) to working in a veterinary hospital. They need you to be available around the clock – at least 8am to 8pm on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday – but you’ll also occasionally get to travel outside the normal operating hours. If you want to do some training courses, veterinary schools like the Royal Veterinary College in London will be able to help you through. A veterinary school like the one run by the RVC will teach at least four different courses at the same time, meaning you’ll graduate with a very large wage packet. You can also work at an animal hospital in a similar fashion, which, if you’re keen, may pay about as much.
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