Do you want to show your love for animals around the globe? Are you looking to channel your inner Dr. Dolittle and hone your talent for understanding animal behavior? Do you regularly find yourself Googling photos of exotic baby animals? Whether you’re looking to work in veterinary medicine, education, or farming, pursuing an international career in animal science will make you “the cat’s meow” in the eye’s of future employers, sharpen your cross-cultural skills, and maybe even give you the chance to improve animal health around the world.
Why Work Abroad in Animal Science
No matter what path you take for your animal science job abroad, it is bound to strengthen your ability to adapt to many different scenarios, whether you find yourself working in a lab, the field, or managing research. Most animal science jobs are great for hands-on learners, challenging workers to learn about specific animal habitats and environmental practices and picking up new tricks and techniques
Knowing how to interact with a diverse range of people is as important as understanding animals in the field of animal science. The people skills you will learn by working in animal science abroad will help you collaborate with animal lovers from foreign cultures and build long-lasting, professional connections.
Animal science is a field that can take you anywhere in the world. The skills you will hone during an animal science job abroad will make your resume shine, no matter where you decide to help new, furry friends in the future.
First and foremost, keep in mind that environmental standards and animal care differ from country to country, and applicants who research the cultural differences before applying will likely take the lead in the hiring process. Animal science jobs can be found in almost any destination across the globe, because every country is home to animals with a need for animal science experts. Here are just a few of the top countries to look for animal science jobs abroad, which will increase your chances of landing a particularly rewarding job in the field:
Before the arrival of humans less than 900 years ago, New Zealand had no mammals, except for species that could fly, like bats, or swim, such as seals, sea lions, and whales. Today, oddly enough, there are more sheep than people in New Zealand, and beef and lamb have become the country’s second largest exports. Animal science professionals looking to focus on animal well-being in dairy or beef farming won’t be disappointed by the number of job opportunities in New Zealand. Not to mention, animal lovers who also happen to be outdoor thrillseekers will find plenty of pristine beaches, green countryside, and remarkable mountains throughout the country. New Zealanders are passionate about conserving their unique natural blessings and wildlife, like the Kiwi bird, New Zealand’s unofficial national symbol, or flightless birds like the curious kea, which make for memorable encounters.
As a continent with a diverse landscape across approximately 50 countries, Europe offers large a variety of animal science job opportunities. Agriculture ranks as one of the top sectors in the European Union and half the land is managed by farmers. Therefore, animal science is regarded as a highly important field and has a significant environmental impact on each European country.
More specifically, there are a number of animal science jobs in the Mediterranean countries of Europe, such as Spain or Greece, where the warm climate, beautiful coastal areas, and spanning countryside offer nature enthusiasts on land and sea a variety of professional options. Ireland, known as the Emerald Isle, is yet another great place to find animal science jobs abroad. Despite all the rain the locals love to complain about, Ireland’s weather patterns makes it a great place for agribusinesses; does a mild climate, in a location where lush, green countryside meets rugged coastline off the Atlantic Ocean around every turn, sound good to you?
Animal Science Jobs Abroad
Animal science jobs abroad are diverse to say the least; whether you are looking to further your understanding of animal agriculture and the environmental side of the field, preserve exotic wildlife, or examine animal breeding, disease, and nutrition, you can find an animal science job abroad somewhere. Since it is such a broad field, it’s worth researching which areas you’d like to specialize in before applying for animal science jobs abroad. The following focus areas will give you an idea of the types of animal science positions that are common on a global scale:
Animal Care & Veterinary Medicine. Are you interested in saving and improving the lives of animals around the world? Clinics, NGOs, private firms, and government agencies hire professionals with a background in animal science to care for the health, safety, and nutrition of animals around the globe. Individuals interested in these types of animal science jobs must be willing to roll up their sleeves, regardless of whether they decide to specialize in animal breeding and reproduction, health maintenance and disease control, or regulating the process of animal products. This hands-on approach to animal science is common in both field-based and lab-based positions. Depending on your host country and the local ecosystems, you may end up handling a variety of animals, from your common cattle to more exotic species.
Education. If you want to pass on your knowledge of animal science to future generations, teaching is the best way to inform others about the field. Animal science professionals interested in education jobs must be enthusiastic about mentoring and motivating groups of students from different cultural backgrounds. Most animal science jobs in education will require teachers to develop an understanding of their host country’s history, standard practices, and cultural traditions to engage students on basic animal anatomy and physiology. Teaching animal science abroad is a good way to hone your people skills, while facilitating groups, maintaining the health and safety of all students, and communicating cross-culturally.
Animal science jobs abroad generally require workers to complete the average 40-hour work weeks, but this can vary depending on the timing and nature of research, lab, and fieldwork. Animal science jobs also typically require professionals to be highly adaptable and willing to work beyond the usual Monday thru Friday schedule as needed.
Most animal science jobs will require applicants to have a bachelor’s degree in a related field at minimum. However, a veterinary doctor or someone with a master’s degree in animal science will be able to apply for more specialized positions. Applicants who have knowledge of the local language and cultural customs will also be able to get ahead in the hiring process. However, not being fluent in your desired country’s language won’t be a deal breaker either, especially if you’re a strong candidate in other areas. Overall, animal science professionals can expect to earn an average of $60,000 annually, depending on the role, location, and responsibilities of each position.
Benefits & Challenges
Intercultural Experiences. Working in animal science abroad will be the ultimate stepping stone toward future positions around the world. In a field that is constantly evolving, the ability to adapt quickly and understand a variety of global practices will make you a highly sought after candidate.
Diverse Species. Your understanding of animals in their natural habitats will expand as you interact firsthand with unique species during an animal science job abroad. Nowadays, employers seek out candidates who are resourceful and proven problem-solvers. There’s no better way to demonstrate you’re a like a Sherlock Holmes for animals, than honing your ability to adapt and understand a diverse range of animals abroad.
Unpredictable Work Environments. Whether you’re planning to work in a lab or in the field, the nature of any career in animal science can present challenges that are difficult to foresee. Depending on your host country, professionals may have to work around a lack of resources or funding, which can serve as just one challenge in your work. Various conditions can make timing and work schedules irregular, and flexibility is usually expected to meet the position’s needs. All things considered, it is important to research standard practices and customs in your host country before accepting an animal science job abroad. Bright candidates who successfully accept these challenges will earn bragging rights as patient, outside-of-the-box thinkers, and future employers will be all ears.
If you’re passionate about caring for animals and taking action in a career that benefits both humans and the environment, animal science jobs are a must do for you! Cross-cultural skills and diversity of a global experience will provide you with a resume boost and land you a promising future in animal science, no matter where in the world you decide to head to next.