Animal Health Technician

Washington, D.C
Sep 30, 2022
Oct 06, 2022
Full Time

The Animal Health Technician works in the Department of Wildlife Health Sciences (WHS), Smithsonian National Zoological Park (NZP) in Washington, DC providing veterinary technical support and completing veterinary tasks for the WHS Veterinary Hospital and medical programs. The technician also serves as a diagnostic tool for health care to ensure proper functioning for the WHS Veterinary Hospital and medical programs for NZP.

In this position you will:
  • Provide technical support to Staff veterinarians and consultants in areas such as: animal anesthesia, treatment, surgery, dentistry, radiology, and preventive medicine.
  • Maintain hospital equipment and are responsible for regularly scheduled general maintenance.
  • Inspect and monitor all hospitalized or quarantined animals to ensure proper care, well-being, and security of animals in enclosures.
  • Administer prescribed treatments, medications and/or nutritional supplements to animals in the hospital and in the grounds of the NZP.
  • Clean hospital facilities, including treatment, surgery and quarantine areas, and organize medical equipment and supplies while maintaining emergency response supplies in working order.
  • Conduct diagnostic tests and providing detailed summaries to the supervisor or requesting official including evaluations or conclusions when appropriate.
  • Teach and participate in training, consultation, and communication with other departments and the public through daily communication with the clinical staff, occasional outreach programs and co-operation with various research scientists.


Conditions of Employment

  • Pass Pre-employment Background Investigation
  • May need to complete a Probationary Period
  • Maintain a Bank Account for Direct Deposit/Electronic Transfer
  • Males born after 12/31/59 must be registered with Selective Service.

Conditions of Employment


For the latest information on the COVID-19 vaccination requirements and its impact on your application, click on Smithsonian Institution's Frequently Asked Questions .

This position requires considerable walking, Standing, heavy lifting (up to 50 1bs"), stooping, and other types of physical effort and dexterity in moving and distributing animals, animal feed, Cage materials, equipment, and in opening and closing cage doors and gates.

The technician will be required to work indoors and outdoors during all types of weather, and may be required to work in hot, cold, dusty, odorous, or high humidity areas, as Well as in closed and cramped spaces.

The incumbent must be available to work any assigned 8-hour shift during any 24 hours of operation; including availability for scheduled and emergency duty on weekends and holidays as needed.


Basic Qualifications: Specialized Experience

(F or positions at GS-4 and above): Examples of qualifying specialized experience include work:
  • As a laborer, manager, or owner of a livestock ranch or farm involving direct work with livestock.
  • With livestock in a feed lot.
  • As a Livestock Market Inspector.
  • As an Animal Welfare Inspector.
  • As an assistant to a veterinarian who works with livestock.

In addition to the basic qualifications for specialized experience requirement above:


You qualify for this position if you have one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-08 level in the Federal Service or comparable pay band system. Current agency employees qualify for this position if you have one year of specialized experience equivalent to at least the GS-07 level in the Federal Service or comparable pay band system.

For this position specialized experience is defined as providing veterinary technical support in the delivery of health care to a wide variety of mammalian, avian, and reptilian collection animals; completing veterinary tasks; and providing clinical laboratory support as a diagnostic tool for health care to insure the proper functioning of in place medical programs.

Experience refers to paid and unpaid experience, including volunteer work done through National Service programs (e.g., Peace Corps, AmeriCorps) and other organizations (e.g., professional; philanthropic; religious; spiritual; community, student, social). Volunteer work helps build critical competencies, knowledge, and skills and can provide valuable training and experience that translates directly to paid employment. You will receive credit for all qualifying experience, including volunteer experience.

Part-time and/or unpaid experience related to this position will be considered to determine the total number of years and months of experience. Be sure to note the number of paid or unpaid hours worked each week.


To qualify at the GS-09 grade level based on education, applicants must successfully complete 2 full academic years of progressively higher-level graduate education or master's or equivalent graduate degree related to the work of the position.

Or a Combination: Education and experience may be combined to meet the basic qualifications. If education is used to meet specialized experience requirements, then such education must include courses directly related to the work of the position.

For a full explanation of this option please see the Qualification Standards . Special Instructions for Foreign Education: If you are qualifying by education and/or you have education completed in a foreign college/university described above, it is your responsibility to provide transcripts and proof of U.S. accreditation for foreign study. For instructions on where to fax these documents, see the "Required Documents" section of this announcement.

Additional information

This position is included in the bargaining unit.

Current or Former Political Appointees: Beginning January 1, 2010, agencies must seek prior approval from OPM before they can appoint a current or recent political appointee to a competitive or non-political excepted service position at any level under the provisions of title 5, United States Code. If you are currently or have been within the last 5 years, a political Schedule A, Schedule C, or Non-career SES employee in the executive branch, you MUST disclose that to the Office of Human Resources. Submit a copy of your applicable SF-50, along with a statement that provides the following information regarding your most recent political appointment:
  • Position title;
  • Type of appointment (Schedule A, Schedule C, Non-career SES, or Presidential Appointee);
  • Agency; and,
  • Beginning and ending dates of appointment.

Recruitment Incentive: Recruitment incentive(s) may be authorized for this position. However, approval for incentives are contingent upon various availability. If authorized, certain incentives will require the incumbent to sign a service agreement to remain in the Federal government for a certain time period.

Note: This statement does not imply nor guarantee an incentive will be offered and paid.