Veterinary Assistant, Cruelty Recovery Center

Please make sure to attach both a resume and cover letter to complete your application.


ASPCA strives to maintain a COVID-free workplace.  To that end, being fully vaccinated is a condition of employment for all ASPCA employees, including new hires.  ASPCA makes reasonable accommodations for qualified applicants with disabilities or sincerely held religious beliefs that prohibit a person from being vaccinated.

At the Cruelty Recovery Center (CRC), a dedicated team of sheltering, veterinary and animal behavior staff work together to serve animals rescued in ASPCA national cruelty cases and disaster responses. This team works closely with the ASPCA’s National Field Response (NFR), Veterinary Forensics, Legal Advocacy & Investigations (LAI), Behavioral Sciences (BST) and Shelter Medicine Services (SMS) teams to ensure well-coordinated operations and high-quality care for animal victims of neglect, abuse and natural disasters. The CRC team also provides care for animals housed in ASPCA temporary field shelters.

The Veterinary Assistant is a key member of the medical team at the CRC. This role provides compassionate care and assists veterinarians and licensed veterinary technicians with examinations, treatments, and monitoring of all animals, utilizing low-stress handling guidelines and shelter medicine best practices, and following all ASPCA policies and protocols. The Veterinary Assistant helps ensure that animals’ physical and behavioral needs are met, providing comprehensive animal care that includes husbandry tasks, observation and reporting of signs of illness or injury, record-keeping and data entry, low-stress animal handling, and preparation and administration of a variety of medications. The Veterinary Assistant works closely with other medical team members to facilitate the delivery of veterinary care and to communicate information regarding animals’ health status to other staff members of the CRC.


Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

Nursing Care and Veterinary Support (60%)

  • Utilize knowledge of veterinary medical concepts and terminology to provide compassionate and quality patient care at all times, using low-stress, skillful handling techniques
  • Assist with care as directed by veterinarians and veterinary technicians including and not limited to: restraining animals for examinations and treatments, preparing and administrating oral, topical and ophthalmic medications, and performing physical therapy
  • Closely observe animals for signs of illness, injury, and/or poor welfare; document and communicate this information on monitoring sheets, in patient medical records, and/or directly to colleagues
  • Ensure accurate and timely data entry to animals’ medical records, including transfer of information from other ASPCA departments’ software systems and diagnostic test results from outside laboratories
  • Prepare samples for submission to outside laboratories and follow-up as needed
  • Feed and medicate patients following veterinarian instructions and standard operating procedures
  • Collaborate with veterinarians and technicians to ensure continuity of care
  • Assist with humane euthanasia following disposition decisions and/or in event of urgent medical need
  • Assist in the collection of evidence and documentation of examinations of live and deceased victims of animal cruelty, including clinical forensic exams and gross necropsies
  • Communicate animal status updates as needed
  • Competently and compassionately explain information about an animal’s condition to other staff and responders with easily understood language

Operational and Programmatic Support (40%)

  • Collaborate with behavior and sheltering colleagues to ensure holistic, balanced care for animals and a cohesive team culture for staff
  • Work with the sheltering team to help ensure that animals are kept in comfortable and sanitary conditions
  • Use objective language and established communication systems to relay relevant observations to the behavior team, flagging behavior changes and concerns
  • Ensure that treatment areas and medical staff work areas are kept clean and orderly and are stocked and ready for use
  • Clean and disinfect kennels, equipment, and facility while utilizing appropriate PPE
  • Follow all departmental PPE and cleaning protocols
  • Work in compliance with Occupational Safety and Health Administration policies and requirements
  • Learn and follow CRC philosophy, procedures and protocols
  • Take inventory and stock supplies as needed; assist the medical team with identifying inventory and ordering needs
  • Advise supervisor of any conditions that are unsafe including unrecognized hazards or infractions of safety rules
  • Be an active participant in staff meetings and trainings
  • Other tasks as assigned by supervisor

Exemplifies the ASPCA’s Core Values:

  • Has Commitment and dedication to improving the lives of animals

  • Demonstrates Ownership and feels responsible for outcomes

  • Believes in Team – that we are stronger together
  • Seeks to Elevate others and reimagine what is possible
  • Focuses on Impact, specifically making change for animals

Additional Information:

  • Minimum of 1-3 years prior animal handling/veterinary experience
  • Experience working in an animal shelter preferred
  • Experience handling fearful and aggressive animals required
  • Experience working with animals from cruelty cases, especially in the field, a plus
  • Previous handling experience with poultry, horses, and/or other species a plus
  • Fear Free® or Fear Free Shelters certified or completed within 60 days of employment
  • Knowledge of and experience working within Incident Command System (ICS) structure preferred; completion of ICS 100, ICS 200, IS0010.a, IS0011.a and IS0700.b training courses within 3 months of employment
  • Able to travel regularly and with little advance notice, up to 25%
  • Experience or specialized training in veterinary forensics is a plus
  • Experience supporting medical care in disaster response or in temporary field shelter situations is a plus


Ability and willingness to work flexible hours, long days and weekends, if required, Ability to lift up to 50 lbs., carry up to 25 lbs., stand for long periods and work outside in various conditions, Able to occasionally work in physically challenging conditions and able to wear appropriate protective gear, including a protective mask; job responsibilities may entail exposure to chemical and biological hazards, such as feces and blood, exposure to sharp objects, working in noisy environments and working in areas with uneven, wet and slippery surfaces, Able to provide appropriate care and handling for sick, injured, fearful, fractious, and/or aggressive cats and dogs, Able to recognize when to ask questions about uncertain situations or protocols, Able to understand and communicate using veterinary medical terminology, Able to work efficiently and calmly under challenging conditions; must demonstrate flexibility with work assignments and unique tasks, Able to work standing for 8 or more hours and bend, crouch, kneel and move freely to perform responsibilities that include handling potentially dangerous, sometimes extremely fearful and/or sometimes severely medically compromised animals in stressful conditions, Always exhibits professionalism in stressful, time-sensitive and urgent situations; brings a calm, collected approach to tackling challenging situations, Basic computer skills, including Microsoft Office and email is required; familiarity with Salesforce or other shelter software systems a plus, Can appropriately handle confidential and sensitive information with care and discretion, Can cope well with exposure to animals suffering from serious medical and/or behavior problems; able to handle the stress of participating in humane euthanasia, sometimes for multiple animals at a time, Ensures and maintains a high-quality standard of care, shows a strong work ethic, and demonstrates consistent performance of duties, Excellent low-stress and defensive animal handling and restraint skills; can skillfully modify handling techniques to best suit individual animals’ needs and unique behavior, Is a team player; truly enjoys working with animals AND people, Knowledge of basic animal care, handling, and disease recognition; familiarity with veterinary hospital protocols and procedures, Possess critical thinking and multi-tasking skills; able to quickly and calmly adjust focus and shift priorities based on patient and department needs, Strong interpersonal and communication skills, Strong organizational skills and a high level of attention to detail; meticulous record-keeping abilities, Thrives both when working independently, without supervision, and as part of a cooperative team



English (Required)

Education and Work Experience:

High School Diploma (Required)


COVID Statement:
The ASPCA strives to maintain a COVID-free workplace. To that end, being fully vaccinated is a condition of employment for all ASPCA employees, including new hires, except where prohibited by applicable state or local law. The ASPCA makes reasonable accommodations for qualified applicants with disabilities or sincerely held religious beliefs that prohibit a person from being vaccinated.

Our EEO Policy:

The ASPCA is an Equal Employment Opportunity employer.  All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, gender, gender identity or expression, age, marital or domestic partner status, citizenship status, sexual orientation, disability, genetic information, military or veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state or local laws, regulations or ordinances.

Applicants with disabilities may be entitled to a reasonable accommodation under the terms of the Americans with Disabilities Act and certain state or local laws.  A reasonable accommodation is a change in the ASPCA’s standard application process, which will ensure an equal employment opportunity without imposing undue hardship on the ASPCA.  Please inform the ASPCA’s People Team if you need an accommodation in order to complete any forms or to otherwise participate in the application process.

Individuals seeking employment are considered without regards to race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, gender, gender identity or expression, age, marital or domestic partner status, citizenship status, sexual orientation, disability, genetic information, military or veteran status,  or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state or local laws, regulations or ordinances.

ASPCA is an Equal Opportunity Employer (M/F/D/V).

Please don’t forget to attach your resume and cover letter to complete your application.

About Us:
The ASPCA was founded in 1866 on the belief that animals are entitled to kind and respectful treatment by humans and must be protected under the law. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation with more than two million supporters nationwide, the ASPCA is committed to preventing cruelty to dogs, cats, equines, and farm animals throughout the United States.

The ASPCA is headquartered in New York City, where we maintain a full-service animal hospital, spay/neuter clinic, mobile spay/neuter and primary pet care clinics, a rehabilitation center for canine victims of cruelty, kitten nursery, adoption center, and two community veterinary centers.

The ASPCA also operates programs and services that extend nationwide. We assist animals in need through on-the-ground disaster and cruelty interventions, behavioral rehabilitation, animal placement, legal and legislative advocacy, and the advancement of the sheltering and veterinary community through research, training, and resources.

At the ASPCA, we are committed to fostering a collaborative and compassionate culture and we welcome all voices to contribute to our lifesaving mission. Our staff represent a vast array of backgrounds and diversity dimensions, bringing with them valuable experiences and perspectives. They join the ASPCA to learn, grow, and continually do their best work on behalf of animals. We are inspired by our staff, partners, and the communities we support across the country who work to improve animal lives. We are committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion at the ASPCA because it elevates our organizational culture, aligns with our Core Values, and enables us to move further and faster toward the ASPCA’s vision – that all animals live good lives; valued by society, protected by its laws, and free from cruelty, pain and suffering.