Urban Coyote Ecology – an Emerging Field

Urban coyote ecology - careers with coyotes & urban wildlife

By Paula Fitzsimmons

Wild animal species once largely restricted to rural areas have become regular urban denizens. In my own mid-sized city, it’s no longer uncommon to see foxes, coyotes, and turkeys roaming freely in residential areas. Several months ago we even spotted what appeared to be a bobcat on the arm of a busy highway. These kinds of sightings were rare as recently as a decade ago.

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No Experience With Animals? These Skills are Transferable

No experience with animals necessary - these skills are transferable

By Paula Fitzsimmons

Are you a career-changer considering a switch to the animal care and welfare sector? If you’ve worked in fields like business, communications, or another nonprofit category, you may already have what you need to find a job working for animals.

Sure, veterinarians, humane law officers, and animal behaviorists, to name a few, need specialized skills and experience. But animal welfare organizations need people with other talents, too. One requirement that is non-negotiable? A love for animals and a desire to improve their lives.

The following is a look at several transferable careers . . .

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Not Getting Job Offers? Several Reasons Why

Owl - get job offers from animal organizations

By Paula Fitzsimmons

Rejection stings, especially when it involves a job you really wanted or thought you’d be perfect for.

It’s essential that you learn to not take rejection personally . . .easier said than done, I know.  But getting turned down for a job isn’t a reflection of who you are or what you have to offer.

For one, you’re competing against dozens and even hundreds of other applicants – one hiring manager at an animal nonprofit recently told me she and her coworkers receive thousands of applications per year.

There are any number of other reasons why you may not be getting your dream job or called back for interviews. I’ve outlined a few of the big ones below.

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Caring About Animals Shouldn’t Hurt: How to Protect Your Soft Center

Self care tips for animal caregivers and advocated

By Paula Fitzsimmons

As animal advocates, we’re exposed to some pretty nasty stuff. Failure to properly shield ourselves emotionally may lead to problems later on, sometimes with disastrous results.

Veterinarians, for instance, experience a higher suicide rate than that of the general population, according to an article in the Journal of Veterinary Medical EducationShelter workers, vet techs, disaster workers, and anyone in regular, direct contact with distressed animals are susceptible to compassion fatigue.

Those who work tirelessly behind-the-scenes to protect animals and the planet are not immune from the hurt, either. Working on legislative bills that don’t pass, dealing with harsh critics, and having to constantly raise funds can also be brutal. And yes, volunteers are also vulnerable.

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Shelter Medicine: An Emerging Veterinary Specialty That Offers Hope

Shelter Medicine - emerging veterinary specialty to help rescue animals

By Paula Fitzsimmons

Rescues are filled with animals who have suffered to some degree in their previous lives. Then there’s shelter life, rife with its own unique challenges – from the stress of being in a new environment, to increased vulnerability to outbreaks.

Balancing the needs of individual animals with that of the group’s isn’t a cake walk for shelter staff, either.

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Purrfect Work: Career & Business Ideas for Cat Lovers

Career & business ideas for cat lovers

By Paula Fitzsimmons

Have you ever thought about turning your passion for cats into paying work or a profitable business, but weren’t quite sure how to make that happen? You may be surprised at the variety of options available to you – and at the number of organizations seeking your passion and special skills.

I know, because opportunities working with cats and other animals regularly get posted on the Animal Jobs Digest jobs page.

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Essential Job Skill: Speaking Up for Animals

Essential job skill - speaking up for animals

By Paula Fitzsimmons

If you want a career advocating for animals, you’ll need to get comfortable speaking out for them. Being their voice is an enormous responsibility, and can feel intimidating, but learning a few basic skills can help you speak out effectively . . .without losing your sanity in the process.

Some careers require more advanced communication skills than others – a public relations manager will obviously need to speak out more than an animal caregiver, for instance. Regardless of your position, you’ll need decent communication skills, because you’re representing not only yourself, but an entire organization.

Practicing even one of these tips can make a difference.

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