Animal Nursery Worker Job Description

by Publishing Team on August 5, 2010

Animal Nursery Workers are responsible for feeding, watering, grooming, bathing and exercising animals. They care for animals, cleaning and disinfecting them, and repairing their cages or pens.

They may be found working in kennels, zoos, animal shelters, and circuses. They keep records of treatments that the animals have received.

Nature of Work

Animal Nursery Workers have serious responsibilities and functions. They are in charge of providing care for newborns and young animals, preparing their food, and transporting them to feeding areas, delivering food and water to them. The food they prepare is usually according to the requirements called for by the particular species of animals they care for. They fill nursing bottles which have been sterilized with the appropriate feeding formula. They also take care of orphaned or deserted animals. They observe newborn animals and check for signs of disease or abnormality. They may perform occasional physical exam on the young animals, taking temperatures, pulse rate and blood pressure. They are also in charge of cleaning and preparing comfortable sleeping areas for animals, removing waste, cleaning and disinfecting them. They make sure that cages and enclosures are safe. Animal nursery workers also bathe and groom animals. They treat them with the right insecticide in order to control pests and insects. They are also responsible for treating minor injuries, and if the animals have serious health problems, report them to veterinarians who are in charge of the facilities. They keep records of their physical conditions. They handle the transfer of sick animals to other cage or enclosure. Animal nursery workers may also be tasked with rescuing or neglected or injured animals. They may also be asked to help with killing ailing animals humanely, and handle their disposal. Where young animals are exhibited, animal nursery workers are responsible for adjusting the humidity and temperature levels to maintain optimum conditions. They install infrared light stands, feeding devices or cribs in the animal exhibition area. They explain the care and feeding procedures to visitors and answer queries about the animals. They observe and caution children who pet or feed the animals.


Most employers prefer candidates with a high school diploma or GED, or vocational education course or a certificate. The best quality that animal nursery workers must have is their genuine concern for the animals’ well-being. They should be observant and be able to notice any unusual occurrence or changes in the animals’ behavior or physical condition. They should know basic math, and have good reading and comprehension skills.

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