Cool Careers: Zookeeper

As a zookeeper, you may be in charge of feeding animals, cleaning up after them, maintaining their habitats, keeping records, etc. Basically your job is to keep the animals alive, healthy and stimulated.

A Demanding Job

Zookeeping is a great career for people who love working with animals. But the job is demanding. You’ll work unpredictable hours since animals need 24/7 care—that includes graveyard shifts or even 7 days a week! It’s also demanding physically, so don’t expect to be sitting around. You’ll be on your feet all day.

Job Hunt

Aside from being a challenging job, zookeeping can also be a tough job to land. There are more people who want to become zookeepers than there are positions available. Chances are you’ll have to move in order to find an open position. If you luck out and land a job at your local zoo, congrats!

Volunteer with Animals

So how do you become a zookeeper? It’s like any other job: the more experience you have, the better your chances. In high school, volunteer at your local zoo, animal shelter, or any other place where you can work with animals. Ask the zoo authorities what they look for in their employees and what credentials they require. Then start working toward getting those credentials.

Brush Up on Your Wildlife Facts

The more you know about wildlife the better. And learning about animals is something you can do at home. Surf the net, or subscribe to wildlife magazines. Go to museums and attend conferences. Even watching the discovery channel will help.

Zookeeping Degrees

Some colleges offer a degree in zookeeping. But not many. Your best bet is to study animal sciences like zoology, animal psychology, and animal nutrition. Or if you have a specific animal of interest, focus on that, whether it’s dolphins (take marine biology), gorillas (take primatology), etc.

Zookeeping Salary

People become zookeepers because of their love for animals, not for the money. While “zookeeper” is a general word for many different types of zoo jobs, zookeepers typically make in the $30,000 range. Hourly, they make $8.00-$16.00 per hour, depending on years of experience and position.

Related Stories:

latest videos


Fave Zoo Critter?

  • Lions are the best.
  • I dig monkeys.
  • The penguins are cool.
  • I love the giraffes.

related stories

hippiepeace asks: "How do you get a job at age 11 and get paid?"
candy123 asks: "I’m 10 years old and I was wondering, what kind of jobs can a 10-year-old have? A...
You and your allies can hold many different jobs in Ragnarok DS, follow our guide and get ready f...

Dear Dish-It in the forums

simran88 posted in Friends:
"donteatcarrots" wrote:they're not your friends if they want you to be something that you're not.^^^^^ this
reply 38 minutes
simran88 posted in Friends:
Tbh, your mom is kinda, you know, right about it. I mean, net is not as safe as we think it is. All I can tell you is that don't talk about her in front of your mom and don't give your friend any personal details about you. 
reply about 1 hour
simran88 posted in Friends:
I am sorry for what you are going through. I feel that it is time for you to find new friends - true friends. Try finding friends with same interests as you. You'll have more things to talk about that way. I hope things get better with you and your friends.
reply about 1 hour
I'm 12 years old, and for some reason I'm always sad. I got a gold medal in my gym, and I just started crying, but I wasn't crying because I was happy. I just don't enjoy anything I used to. My mum does know but she says it's a phase. It isn't. I just started high school, but I don't have any new friends yet and all the popular girls pick on me and call me a loner :-( I hate school. I like the actual lessons but I don't like the social side of it. There are lots of clubs on at lunch that I want to go to but I'm too scared to go to any. I have been to one , science club but everyone was staring at me the whole time (I don't know why, and frankly I don't care, I just want them not to). Any advice would be appreciated.
reply about 2 hours
EndlessDream posted in Style:
I'm hoping to get my ears pierced, though I don't have the time or money to do it at the moment. Hopefully soon, though.
reply about 6 hours

play online games