Ever dreamed of working with animals? Let’s be real- most of us have. The thought of getting paid to hang out with critters all day sounds like an absolute bloody dream.

Thankfully, working with animals is becoming an increasingly popular career choice (and we can see why). It’s easy to get bogged down in thinking that you need to be a vet to work with animals, but here’s some news for ya- you don’t need to train to be a vet at all. Here are 5 ways you can work with animals that don’t require veterinary training. 

1. Groomer

From dogs to horses, groomers keep animals looking cute as a damn button. If you don’t mind getting down and dirty then this might just be the best job out there for any animal lover.

While some animals treat their grooming like a trip to the spa, others absolutely hate it (I know my dog does), so groomers have to learn to work their magic on even the more difficult of pets. But the upside is that groomers also get the chance to specialise in one type of animal. So if you’re a big dog lover, specialise in dog grooming and you can dole out the pats all day long. 

2. Animal rescue operations

It’s painful knowing there are animals out there struggling, but if you’re keen to lend a helping hand suss out some animal rescue operations. While the majority is volunteer work, you’ll be rewarded with the sweet sensation of saving animals and helping them find a good home. Money certainly can’t give that to you.

One great operation is the Nepal Street Dog Rescue. Street dogs in Kathmandu are starving and suffering from infected wounds, skin disorders and other nasty parasites. But with your help, the doggos can be kept in an animal shelter and given care and affection until they can be offered up for adoption. You’ll also get to learn more about beautiful Nepal with other activities and sightseeing so give it a suss.

3. Work on a farm

Get into the gig of being a real-life cowboy or cowgirl. Working on a farm not only delivers the promise of hangin’ out with animals, but you’ll get to experience a culture of hard work ethic and the incredible scenery the Australian outback has to offer.

Take our Jackaroo & Jillaroo Gap Year program for an example. On the program, you’ll get trained on ranches, farms and stations for work. You’ll get to feed and water cattle, groom some horses and fix saddles and horseshoes. Give it a peep and get your yeehaw on. You’ll feel like Hannah Montana doing the hoedown throwdown in no time.

4. Dog walker

If you love dogs as much as I do, this job will literally be a walk in the park. Yes, literally.

Walking doggos, getting fit AND getting moolah? Sign me the heck up. Start off by walking the neighbours’ or friends’ dogs to get your name out there and eventually you’ll be in business. Not to mention this is a great job if you’re still studying.

5. Pet photographer

Got a love for animals and an itch for photography? Why not combine the two? You can specialise in wildlife photography, supply images to stock agencies or simply take pictures of people’s pets in a studio or their homes.

You don’t need a qualification, but it’s recommended you take up a photography course so people know you’re the real deal.

Getting to work with animals isn’t restricted to studying intensely to become a vet. Most of these options don’t require degrees, certificates or qualifications, so if you wanna work with animals, give these some serious thought. Animals are truly the purest things on earth, so getting to work with them on a daily basis is surely the pathway to a happy career.