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Employment Outlook

Veterinary Nurse

A Veterinary Nurse will assist the Vet during surgery, medicating pets and taking x-rays where required. They will also be responsible for looking after the cages where animals are kept, spending time with the animals and making sure they have food and water. They can provide help and advice to owners and also make sure all animal records are kept up-to-date.


Average wage for

Employment Levels

Around 8,600 people are currently employed as Veterinary Nurses in Australia. This is set to increase slightly to 9,800 people by 2019, according to the Department of Employment.

Employment by State

27.3% of all Veterinary Nurses are employed in QLD. The area with the lowest number of Veterinary Nurses is NT, with only 1%.

Gender Split

This is a very female dominated industry with 0.8% of Veterinary Nurses being male and 99.2% female.

Age Brackets

The most popular age for people working as Veterinary Nurses is 25-34 years old, with 39.6%. A small percentage (1.8%) of people get into this career path older, aged 65 and over. There is also a number of people who enjoy a career as Veterinary Nurses, with 8.1% aged 15-19.

Hours Worked

Veterinary Nurses work an average of 34.9 hours a week which is 6 hours lower than the average for all occupations.

Education Level

The majority of Veterinary Nurses have a Year 12 qualification (72.1%) or are at a Certificate III/IV level (27.9%). 27.9% of people have a Cert III or higher, whilst 72.1% have a qualification which is Year 12 or lower.

Veterinary Nurse Duties & Tasks

  • Prepare animals ready for surgery
  • Administer drugs, anaesthetics and injections
  • Hold and monitor animals during surgery
  • Make sure surgical equipment is sterilised and laid out ready
  • Clean areas after surgery
  • Prepare and send off any samples required for the laboratory
  • Take x-rays
  • Care for the animals, making sure they have exercise and are well groomed
  • Provide advice to owners about caring for their animals
  • Make sure records are kept up-to-date, as well as writing and filing reports



*The information provided on this page is from the Department of Employment’s Job Outlook website. All salary ranges are from Payscale. Where jobs are not exact matches, job areas have been used. This information is to be used as a guide only.