8 High-Paying Careers for Animal Lovers (Woof, Woof!)

Find the perfect job if you’re an animal lover who also wants to boost your bank account.

vet cuddling pet dog
Updated May 28, 2024
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Sometimes the best customers to work for are furry customers.

But you may be surprised to find that there are jobs that can boost your bank account while also giving you the ability to work with plenty of different animals.

Check out some of these professions that are perfect for animal lovers while also making you money.


goodluz/Adobe veterinarian checking on herd's health in barn

Even animals need doctors so consider this option if you like working with animals and finding ways to provide health care and keep them healthy.

You usually need a degree as a doctor of veterinary medicine as well as a license to practice veterinary medicine in your state. But that work can pay off with a median annual salary of $100,370, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Wildlife biologist

slowmotiongli/Adobe biologist holding a black skimmer with their hands

A wildlife biologist studies animals in the wild and in captivity to see how they interact with their ecosystems and develops plans for wildlife conservation.

You’ll need a bachelor’s degree in a field like wildlife biology or zoology and perhaps even a master’s degree or doctorate, depending on job requirements. A wildlife biologist can make $64,650 in median annual pay.

Conservation scientist

aicandy/Adobe conservation scientist in a natural setting

Conservation scientists monitor forests, parks, and other lands as they work to conserve natural spaces and protect the habitats of the animals that live there.

You can earn a median annual salary of $63,750 starting with a bachelor’s degree in forestry, natural resources, or other fields that are relevant to the position. You can also earn a certification from the Society of American Foresters.

Veterinary technician

AnnaStills/Adobe mature woman in uniform working as a veterinarian in clinic

If you don’t want to be a veterinarian, you can take on the job of a veterinary technician. Your job would include aiding veterinarians on exams or caring for animals or providing aid in emergencies for animals.

A veterinary technician doesn’t need as much time in college as a veterinarian, usually only requiring an associate's degree or bachelor’s degree. You can earn a median annual income of $36,850 as a technician.

Fish and game warden

karel/Adobe white tailed deer fawn with hind on natural trail

Fish and game wardens are important for monitoring fish and game law violations and making sure fish and game are protected. They also investigate damage to property and crops caused by fish and game

A fish and game warden can expect to earn a median annual income of $59,500, according to the BLS.

Animal scientist

MaryCatalan/Adobe woman with penguins in background

An animal scientist is responsible for working with domestic farm animals. They may be responsible for researching different nutrition options for farm animals, reproductive issues, growth, and the genetics of farm animals.

The BLS reports that an animal scientist can earn $69,390 in median annual income.


herraez/Adobe farrier placing the hot shoe on the horse's hoof

Horseshoes aren’t just a game. For farriers, it’s their job to care for, maintain, and repair the hooves of horses. They may shoe horses, including customizing horseshoes for each horse’s hoof. They’re also responsible for trimming hooves, correcting hoof issues, or other issues with the hooves of an equine.

Farriers can make $52,028 in yearly income, according to jobs website Glassdoor.

Animal control worker

chas53/Adobe raccoon caught in a trap

Animal control workers are responsible for investigating reports of animal cruelty or getting abandoned or dangerous animals under control in order to keep the public safe from the animals.

An animal control worker can make a median annual salary of $39,320, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Bottom line

Voyagerix/Adobe cowgirl and jockey walking with horses in stable

Your love for animals can translate into some fun jobs that will allow you to earn money while hanging out with small furry friends and big animals too.

You can also take on lesser-paying jobs such as pet sitter or dog-walker, if you’re looking for ways to make extra money. These positions may not earn the same level of income as a zoologist or veterinarian, but the flexible hours could enable you to do that work as a side hustle.

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Author Details

Jenny Cohen

Jenny Cohen is a freelance writer who has covered a bit of everything, from finance to sports to her favorite TV shows. Her work has been featured in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and FoxSports.com.