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The Pickaway-Ross Veterinary Assisting program is a challenging, fast-paced, NAVTA-credentialed program that engages students interested in gaining the valuable skills necessary to become a veterinary assistant, while also serving as a steppingstone for those wanting to pursue higher education. 

Students begin by exploring the animal body structure, both internal and external, and investigating the function of major organ systems, while developing an understanding of the relationship between these parts and systems.  As students progress through the program, the focus will turn toward responsible animal husbandry, examining diseases, including the causes, common clinical signs, and prevention, nutrition, breeding program management, animal behavior, and animal welfare and ethics.  A major portion of the second year in the program will prepare students with skills and knowledge to be confident in the areas of pharmacology, radiology, and surgical assisting, as well as in laboratory and hospital procedures, within the role of a veterinary assistant.     

This program provides hands-on learning opportunities through lab activities, job shadowing experiences, grooming services, vaccine clinics, and field-specific certifications including the Fear Free Professional, OSHA 10-Veterinary, and Pet First Aid & CPR.  Upon successful completion of the two-year program, and fulfilling all requirements, students may have the opportunity to sit for a national exam to become an AVA, or Approved Veterinary Assistant.

Through our CTSO HOSA-Future Health Professionals in-class activities and regional and state competitive events, students will develop vital leadership qualities that promote career opportunities in the veterinary industry, as well as build self-confidence and skills relative to technique and teamwork.  HOSA also encourages student participation in volunteerism that benefits our school and local communities. 

Course Description

  • Study internal and external anatomical parts, their functions, and will investigate the relationship among these parts and systems within the body of an animal.

  • Apply knowledge of companion animal care to enhance animal growth, enrichment, training, and education engagement programs.

  • Perform animal health assessments and compare them to standard characteristics. 

  • Learn causes, symptoms, and treatment of common animal diseases with special emphasis on developing preventative health management plans and breeding programs.

  • Work with live animals.


Participate as a member of this career and technical student organization.

Rebecca Hopkins, Veterinary Assisting Instructor


Rebecca Hopkins



  • Approved Veterinary Assistant

  • Pet First Aid &


  • OSHA 10 (Veterinary)

  • Fear Free Professional

Veterinary Assistant, Veterinary Technician, Veterinarian (post-secondary education required for some occupations)

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Veterinary Assisting Program Video

"Your class definitely prepared me the most out of all of the classes I took in high school. I think many would agree. I always thought of your class as intense and that’s what college is. Cierra and I both mentioned your class and your teaching style within the first couple weeks of us in college about how we appreciated it. We both miss you!"

Sophia Henson, Pre-Vet Student at University of Findlay  

   Class of 2023,

Meet Danielle Jones

Student enrolled in the Animal Sciences Program at The Ohio State University.  

   Class of 2021

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