Animal Nursery Worker

Look after newborn animals.
picture of Animal Nursery Worker

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$16,000 – $32,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Animal Nursery Workers do?

If you like the idea of caring for creatures so small that they cannot take care of themselves, then this job could be right for you. As an Animal Nursery Worker, you care for newborn animals. You’re responsible for feeding them, cleaning them and their cages, and monitoring their general health.

Depending on the type of facility you work in, you can also care for the mother during the first stages of the babies’ development. But keeping a close eye on the infant animals is always your top priority.

Animal nurseries take many different forms. For example, many Animal Nursery Workers are employed in zoos or breeding facilities. Depending on your workplace, you can deal with many different species — reptiles, amphibians, mammals — or you can focus exclusively on one type of animal, like St. Bernards or chinchillas.

Either way, you strive hard to develop the bedside manner required for each infant that you work with. Recognizing disorders and signs of illness as early as possible and then reporting them to the Veterinarian in charge are critical. Expect to fill out daily reports on every animal. You’ll be part of a team, probably working a standard 40-hour workweek.

Some Animal Nursery Workers deal with the public. For instance, a facility might allow children to meet or pet the young animals. In these cases, your job is to watch all interactions carefully, and keep both the animals and humans safe.

However, this job isn’t all fun. Dirty cages need to be cleaned constantly, and sometimes, you may be called upon to humanely euthanize a baby animal due to illness or injury. Every job has an unpleasant element to it, but working with small animals every day is something that a lot of people still wish they could do.

Should I be an Animal Nursery Worker?

You should have a certificate degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Independent: You enjoy flying solo and doing things your own way.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Levelheaded: You hold your emotions in check, even in tough situations.

  • How to become an Animal Nursery Worker

    Animal Nursery Workers often have a Certificate or higher. Chart?chd=s:9udtda&chl=no+college+%2858%25%29|certificate+%2819%25%29|associate%27s+%283%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2818%25%29|master%27s+%283%25%29|&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,58,58
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