Name: Tanya Butson, RVT
Job: Sales Representative for Southern Ontario veterinary practices with McCarthy & Sons Services
Q&A with Tanya
OAVT: Where did you go to school and what made
you decide to take a Veterinary Technology program?
Tanya: My first year of the Veterinary Technology course was completed at Centralia College. My second and final year was at Ridgetown College.
During my first year of school at the University of Waterloo, I found myself in a quandary realizing I wasn't doing what felt right. It was my kitten, Drew, laying on my chest, that provided me with a "light bulb" moment that I must work with animals. I applied to Centralia that week, finished up my first year at Waterloo and started the Vet Tech program in September that same year.
OAVT: You first became an RVT in 1995. What changes have you seen within the RVT profession since then?
Tanya: I have seen many strides made in the industry as well our profession over the past two decades. There are dedicated individuals in our field who have worked relentlessly to improve our compensation as well as our working environment.
Medicine has improved as well and overall, the care given to our patients has increased tremendously.
We must give thanks to those who have fought for higher wages, more recognition of our credentials and better work-life balance. Without these people, we may be still working for minimum wage and not a soul in the world would know our value.
OAVT: You currently work with McCarthy & Sons Services. What do you love about your job?
Tanya: The favourite parts of my job are many! I love visiting different practices every day and meeting new people and helping them bring best medicine to their patients with our products. I love the flexibility that being a sales representative brings to my life and the time driving on the road is so much fun!
OAVT: And what other jobs have you had in this field?
Tanya: I've been in this field for 22 years so I have seen many facets of veterinary practices, including Head RVT and Hospital Administrator positions, as well as kennel duty, receptionist, RVT, etc.
OAVT: Every RVT has a different passion. For some, it’s rehabilitation. For others, it’s rabies awareness, nutrition, or spay/neuter. What are YOU most passionate about when it comes to animal health and wellness?
Tanya: My passion is an obvious one to anyone who knows me. It's the WELL-BEING for those without a voice. I am passionate about animal welfare and their rights. I believe animals deserve the right to live a life without being harmed for human benefit.
I started advocating for animals publicly in my twenties (likely been doing so all my life in a more discrete fashion) and continue to try to educate people on the importance animals have in our world.
OAVT: What advice would you give to students and new RVTs who want to try their hand at different roles within this industry?
Tanya: Follow your gut. Really listen to your instincts and if what you are currently partaking in doesn't resonate, then try something different.
Never leave this industry until you have tried all avenues open to you. You may not find happiness in one area, but you may just find it elsewhere in the field.