Veterinary Assistant I


Job Title: Veterinary Assistant I

Department: Shelter

Classification: Full or part time, non-exempt

Job Relationship: Reports to Clinic Supervisor; works closely with Clinic Manager, Veterinary technicians, and Veterinarians.

Position Summary: Responsible for assisting with client and animal check-in and discharge, assisting with animal handling for exams/procedures, assisting with daily cleaning responsibilities.

Essential Job Functions:

Provides assistance to Community Clinic, RVT’s, and Veterinarians

  • Keeps all clinic areas orderly, stocked and cleaned following disinfection protocol; responsible for maintaining sterile environment
  • Cleans surgical instruments; wraps and sterilizes surgery packs
  • Maintains veterinary equipment in good working condition
  • Maintains laundry by cleaning, folding, and putting away to designated areas
  • Required to cross-train between Clinic sub-departments
  • Follows all safety guidelines to ensure a safe work environment. Takes immediate action to address any safety concern or noncompliance of safety rules that could put an employee, volunteer, client, animal, or the organization at risk
  • Supports the APL’s desire to celebrate a diverse and inclusive culture that fuels the compassion that connects us to one another.

Animal Care and Surgery Flow

  • Assists RVTs and Veterinarians with pre-surgical preparations, including physical exams
  • Safely retrieves and restrains animals for surgeries, exams, tasks, and verifies
  • Assists with non-anesthesia surgical preparation (clipping/scrubbing)
  • Monitors animals through post-anesthesia and recovery
  • Administers non-controlled treatments (oral, topical or SQ), as directed
  • Assists with capturing x-ray images
  • Assists with laser therapy
  • Ensures supplies are written on order list as they diminish
  • Trains other staff, volunteers, or interns
  • Maintains a healthy and safe environment for animals and people
  • Maintains laundry throughout the day
  • Updates animal records in PetPoint

 Provides professional client and volunteer care   

  • Always represents the APL in a professional and courteous manner
  • Provides quality service to customers, volunteers, and staff
  • Works closely with Clinic Supervisor, Clinic Manager, RVTs and Veterinarians to provide prompt customer service and client education to ALL clients
  • Provides phone calls to clients as needed
  • Assists with intake in morning as needed, and discharges clients in evening
  • Actively promotes the APL programs and events to clients and volunteers
  • Refers clients to appropriate staff for service
  • Promotes communication and cooperation between APL departments.

Performs other duties as assigned including but not limited to:

  • Informs supervisor of special needs cases for potential public relations or direct mail pieces
  • Performs other duties and special projects as assigned; participates on special committees as needed


  • Accurate typing and data entry skills
  • Ability to use good judgment
  • Dependable regarding schedule with the ability to be flexible to accommodate the needs of the APL
  • High school diploma or equivalent preferred
  • Internal applicants currently in good standing
  • Ability to thoroughly read and understand instructions
  • Ability to work with animals, disinfectants, and cleaning supplies
  • Ability to perform physical work: scrubbing, mopping, bending, lifting, walking, sitting and standing for up to 8 hours a day, lifting up to 50 pounds with assistance

Knowledge and Skills

  • Ability to work in a fast-paced environment with a variety of people
  • Ability to efficiently use Google Chrome and Internet Explorer
  • Ability to anticipate the needs of Veterinarians and RVTs
  • Knowledge of animal breed, behavior, and handling
  • Knowledge of animal health, and able to identify illness helpful
  • Familiarity with veterinary medical terminology helpful
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Willing to improve upon skills routinely
  • Detail oriented and able to prioritize and perform duties efficiently and effectively with an adequate amount of independence
  • Committed to maintaining the Cleveland Animal Protective League’s high standard of animal care and mission to foster, compassion, and end animal suffering
  • Fear Free Certified or must become certified within six months of hire