Becoming a Veterinary Technician in Colorado

For anyone who wants a career working with animals, becoming a veterinary technician, a vet assistant or an animal caregiver in Colorado is a great option. The state is expected to see 43 percent growth in the field of animal careers over the next several years, with an average of 150 new jobs opening up for prospective vet techs and assistants. [Leer en español]

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Veterinary Technician Salaries

Vet techs in Colorado earn a good living with an average annual salary of $30,880. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the top earners in the field are making up to $39,640 each year. Vet assistants and animal caregivers working in shelters or laboratories earn less, with an average salary of $25,490 and top earnings of $32,410.

Colorado Requirements for Veterinary Technicians

Unlike many other states, Colorado does not certify or license veterinary technicians. To become certified and to be in a better position to be hired within the state, technicians can be certified through the Colorado Association of Certified Veterinary Technicians. Requirements for certification include completion of a veterinary technology program accredited by the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), a passing score on the Veterinary Technician National Exam and maintaining continuing education credits. Veterinary assistants and animal caregivers do not need to be certified to get a job, but education and experience help.

Featured School

Penn Foster College – Veterinary Technician Program

Full accreditation from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA). Clinical externships through a private practice near your home or Penn Foster College’s partner VCA Animal Hospitals. Gain hands-on experience alongside licensed veterinarians and credentialed veterinary technicians. Call 1-800-851-1819 today.

AVMA-Accredited Veterinary Technician Programs

The AVMA accredits vet tech programs across the country, and there are several such programs in Colorado:

Veterinary Technician Employers in Colorado

Of the nearly 3,000 vet techs employed in Colorado, most are employed by animal hospitals and clinics, private veterinary practices, specialty practices, laboratories, kennels and shelters. Some of the employers of veterinary technicians include:

Professional Organizations

Veterinary technicians in Colorado may seek certification through and membership with the Colorado Association of Certified Veterinary Technicians. In addition to certification, members can also get access to job postings, continuing education opportunities and special events. Vet techs in the state may also want to join the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America, or NAVTA. This national group offers members even more professional resources and group discounts on such things as health insurance and hotels.

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College and University Listings

Colorado Springs, CO Area

Colorado Academy of Veterinary Technology

2766 Janitell Road, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80906-4944
Veterinary Assisting – Certificate Program, Veterinary Technology – Associate Program

Colorado Academy of Veterinary Technology offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program and an Associate program. Classes are taken at their campus in the city of Colorado Springs, Colorado. The majority of of the school’s 75 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education. The retention rate of full-time students at this college is over 80%. Tuition fees are around $11,435 per year. Study materials can cost in the order of $800, depending on the program chosen.

Pima Medical Institute-Colorado Springs

3770 Citadel Drive North, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80909
Veterinary Assistant – Certificate Program, Veterinary Technician – Associate Program

Pima Medical Institute offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program and an Associate program. Classes are taken at their Colorado Springs campus in the city of Colorado Springs. Most of the school’s 563 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools. Tuition fees for the Vet Tech program are generally around $12,024 per year. Books and supplies can cost in the order of $743. The typical program completion time is 8 months.

Denver-Aurora-Broomfield, CO Area

Bel-Rea Institute of Animal Technology

1681 S Dayton St, Denver, Colorado 80247
Veterinary Technician – Associate Program

The Associate’s program at Bel-Rea Institute of Animal Technology is offered at their campus in the city of Denver, CO. Most of the school’s 489 students are on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges. Tuition fees are around $11,588 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $1,052, although this varies from program to program.

Community College of Denver

1111 W. Colfax Ave., Denver, Colorado 80204-2026
Veterinary Assistant – Certificate Program, Veterinary Technology – Associate Program

Community College of Denver offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program and an Associate program. All programs are taught at their campus in the city of Denver, CO. Most of the school’s 10,296 students are on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-state students is around $3,509 and for out-of-state students in the order of $13,179 per year. Learning materials may cost in the order of $1,800, although this will vary with the program.

Front Range Community College

3645 W 112th Ave, Westminster, Colorado 80031
Veterinary Technician Assistant – Certificate Program, Veterinary Technology – Associate Program

Front Range Community College offers multiple training options, including a Certificate program and an Associate program. All programs are offered at their campus in Westminster in Adams County. This public college has round 18,761 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Fees for tuition for in-state students are in the order of $3,527 and for students from outside the state likely to be about $13,244 yearly. Study materials can cost around $1,800, depending on the program chosen.

Pickens Technical College

500 Airport Blvd, Aurora, Colorado 80011-9307
Veterinary Assistant – Certificate Program

Pickens Technical College’s Certificate program is based at their campus in the city of Aurora, CO. Most of the school’s 1,084 students are on 2-year programs. The cost of tuition for students living in the state is roughly in the order of $2,376 and for students from outside the state around $4,656 for each academic year, while books and supplies may cost roughly $600, although this will vary with the program.

Pima Medical Institute-Aurora

13750 E. Mississippi Avenue, Aurora, Colorado 80012-0000
Veterinary Technician – Associate Program, Veterinary Assistant – Certificate Program

Pima Medical Institute offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. All programs are offered at their Aurora campus in the city of Aurora. This private, for-profit college has in the order of 315 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools. Tuition fees for the Vet Tech program are around $16,443 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $2,117. Program completion is normally 12 months.

Pima Medical Institute-Denver

7475 Dakin St Suite 100, Denver, Colorado 80221
Veterinary Assistant – Certificate Program

Pima Medical Institute’s Certificate program is taught at their Denver campus in Denver in Adams County, CO. This private, for-profit college has approximately 944 students in total, with the majority of students on 2-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools. Tuition fees for the Vet Tech program are likely to be around $12,024 annually. Learning materials may cost around $743. Program completion is usually 8 months.

Eastern and Southern Colorado nonmetropolitan area Area

Lamar Community College

2401 S Main St, Lamar, Colorado 81052-3999
Veterinary Science – Certificate Program

Lamar Community College’s Certificate-level Veterinary Science program is offered at their campus in the town of Lamar, Colorado. The college has approximately 839 students in total, with most students on 2-year programs. Fees for tuition for in-state students are around $3,546 and for out-of-state students likely to be about $5,766 yearly, while books and supplies may cost about $1,800, although this varies from program to program.

Western Colorado nonmetropolitan area Area

Colorado Mountain College

802 Grand Ave., Glenwood Springs, Colorado 81601-0233
Veterinary Technology – Associate Program, Animal Shelter Management – Certificate Program

Colorado Mountain College offers multiple training options, including an Associate program and a Certificate program. Classes are taken at their campus in the town of Glenwood Springs, CO. The majority of of the school’s 5,705 students are on 4-year programs. The college is institutionally accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. The cost of tuition for in-district students is roughly in the order of $1,556 and are $2,756 and $9,140 for in-state and out-of-state students respectively, while study materials may cost roughly $1,200, depending on the program.

* Tuition fees and accredition status are correct at the time of writing, according to the National Center for Education Statistics (http://nces.ed.gov/). Confirm with college before applying.

Other Options

Colorado residents have further educational options in the neighboring states of New Mexico, Arizona, Utah, Wyoming, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas.