Animal Transport or Ambulance Officer

Animals do need to be moves from time to time.

  • Healthy animals may need transporting from one zoo or wildlife park to another; or from a wilderness location to another.
  • Wildlife managers may use capture and release programs to manage population numbers where they need relocating to a more favourable, or underpopulated location
  • Injured animals may need relocating to a place where they can be better cared for
  • Breeding animals may be relocated to zoos, parks or other places so they can breed and maintain a better genetic diversity in the species.

Anyone who transports injured or rescued wildlife or other animals for medical treatment or to holding facilities, will need to maintain the animal's comfort and wellbeing during transport. Animals being transported would most likely be distressed and frightened if they are wild and/or injured and in pain. Even healthy animals can become disoriented and distressed during transport, and the level of stress on arrival at an unfamiliar location will only be heightened if the travel is less comfortable.

Wildlife conservation and other rescue organisations sometimes employ specialised personnel to transport rescued or injured animals.  Volunteer or paid employment opportunities exist with larger rescue organisations. There may also start to be a need for this service for larger veterinary clinics. There are also private business that operate as transport for pets to and from owners homes to vet clinics, board kennel etc. The vehicles are equipped with basic first aid and other medical equipment such as medical oxygen. 

How to become an animal ambulance driver
Most people will start out working for an organisation such as an animal shelter or zoo, as a volunteer, animal attendant, or in some other capacity; and eventually graduate into this type of position, as they shoew interest, develop experience and extend their education.

Knowledge of animal health care, behaviour as well as skills and experience in handling animals would be desirable for employment in this type of role. Obviously a current driver’s licence would also be required for this role. Knowledge of animal first aid and other animal health skills would be useful, perhaps experience at a vet clinic would also be recommended.