Become a Vet Tech in Virginia

Steps to Become a Vet Tech in Virginia

Virginia uses the term Licensed Veterinary Technician. To become a licensed veterinary technician in Virginia, one must have graduated from an AVMA accredited program with either a 2 year associate’s degree or a 4 year Bachelor of Science veterinary technician degree. There are multiple schools in Virginia that offer vet tech programs leading to either of these degrees. Applicants for licensure must submit an official transcript form their educational institution in addition to a completed notarized application available from the Virginia Board of Veterinary Medicine.  Successful passage of the VTNE (Veterinary Technician National Exam) is also required. Interested candidates need to apply to AAVSB (American Association of Veterinary State Boards) to sit for the exam.

;The final step in applying for licensure is to have the applicants sign a statement acknowledging their knowledge of and desire to adhere to the laws that govern veterinary technology. Licenses must be renewed every year. Veterinary technicians are required to have 6 hours of continuing education form an approved source each year. Approved sources can be found at www.dhp.state.va.us. Renewal by the online process is strongly encouraged.

There is the opportunity, in some situations for veterinary technicians to garner a license by endorsement. Proof must provided that the current license/registration/certification from the originating state is in good standing. Applicants must have been practicing in clinical practice for two of the last four years prior to application. As with other applicants, endorsement candidates must be graduates of an AVMA accredited veterinary technology program.

Equine dental technicians are allowed to provide planning or leveling of the teeth of equine patients with either motorized or non-motorized equipment. They are allowed to perform extractions of any of the following teeth – 105, 205, 305 or 405 provided they are being supervised by a licensed veterinarian. The veterinarian must assume all responsibility for the veterinary-client-patient relationship; administration and monitoring of any sedatives/tranquilizers administered to the patient and must remain physically present during the entire procedure. Equine dental technicians are not allowed to administer any sedative/tranquilizers, analgesics or medication of any kind to their patients. Nor are they allowed to provide cutting or chipping of the teeth or extraction of any rooted tooth.

The Board is working on establishing regulation to govern equine dental technicians more specifically. On the list of items to address:

  • criteria and fees for initial application process and renewal
  • continuing education requirements
  • Rules to oversee the welfare and safety of all the animals treated by equine dental technicians.


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