Unusual Professions: Animal breeder

The profession of animal breeder covers a wide range of responsibilities. Take for example the breeder of purebred dogs and cats. These are not only kept as pets, but also as show champions.

Some of the very rare breeds can cost staggering amounts of money. One of the very rarest dog breeds, an ancient Tibetan mastiff, can cost as much as $ 2 million. In Chinese mythology it is a very important animal, it has a rich coat reminiscent of a bear or a lion, and it is also believed there is lion blood circulating in mastiffs‘ veins. Then of course there are also larger animals, like race horses.


The variety within this profession doesn’t end here, however. Another branch of the animal breeder profession includes, for example, research into new and more efficient ways to produce meat and other animal products for the food industry.

Course to study

There is no need of a formal a education for breeding small animals; however, it is appropriate to know the specific needs and problems of any particular breed. More exotic animals require more education, at a minimum a bachelor‘s degree in veterinary medicine. Beyond that there is a need, of course, for a genuine interest in animals. There should be empathy, patience, and an even-tempered approach to working with animals. The most important factor for choosing this profession shoud not be the prospect of large profits – that is not what an animal breeder‘s career is about.

Where to study

For ZOO or exotic animals – Veterinary medicine, minimum Bc. Degree. To breed agricultural animals, a 4-year degree in agricultural science.

Veterinarian study.

Agricultural science.


As in any profession, compensation levels can vary depending on many factors: what animal and breed it is, what purpose it is bred for, whether the animal breeder has produced any champions, etc. The average annual salary according to the BLS is $ 37,230, but this number must be taken with a grain of salt, the amount can be also much higher.

Photo: Shutterstock

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