Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Lynsey Gargan from STEPS to give some advice for people considering this job:


Lynsey Gargan

Manufacturing Engineer


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  Lynsey Gargan
With regard to education I say don't worry if you think you have the wrong subjects in school. I certainly didn't have the subjects you would typically expect.

There are a number of courses that cater to different backgrounds. The most important thing is to do your research. Go to open days, talk to the colleges and generally just find out what exactly you would be getting in to.

Don't just take for granted you know what a certain course or career is all about. Think about what you like to do, and not just necessarily in school, if you find yourself being curious about how things work or how thing are made, it's a good indication that you could like something like engineering.

One of the best things about engineering is that it really can be your passport to the world. There are great travel opportunities within the industry and chances to be involved in the next big thing.

Practically every man-made product around you came from a manufacturing plant, it's a huge industry with a lot of different avenues to take. Innovation is a really big part of what engineers do. The desire to be creative and improve production and processes is an important attribute for a manufacturing engineer.

The Social person's interests focus on some aspect of those people in their environment. In all cases the social person enjoys the personal contact of other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.

Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people, and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.
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Occupation Details

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ISPCA Inspector

Job Zone

These occupations usually require a Leaving Certificate or equivalent.

Related Experience
Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a bank teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations need anywhere from a few months to one year of working with experienced employees. A recognised apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.

Job Zone Examples
These occupations often involve using your knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include sheet metal workers, forest fire fighters, customer service representatives, physical therapist aides, retail salespersons and tellers.

€19k > 37 
ISPCA Inspector
Salary Range
(thousands per year)*
€19 - 37 
Related Information:
Data Source(s):

Last Updated: March, 2017

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.
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At a Glance... header image

ISPCA inspectors enforce the law relating to the care, transportation and general welfare of pets, livestock and other animals.

The Work header image

The Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ISPCA) enforces the law relating to the care, transportation and general welfare of pets, livestock and other animals. Inspectors investigate all complaints about cruelty, but only prosecute in extreme cases of wilful cruelty. Instead they prefer to educate owners in the proper care of their animals. If a case does reach court, an inspector is likely to give evidence.  
Inspectors cover town and country areas, which may include farms, riding stables, pet shops, boarding kennels and breeding establishments. Some areas include less common establishments, such as race tracks, abattoirs, livestock markets, circuses and zoos.  
Inspectors try to find suitable homes for abandoned or injured animals. However, it is occasionally necessary to humanely destroy sick or badly injured animals or even unwanted litters of kittens and puppies. Inspectors may also be called to accident or rescue situations that involve animals.  
A substantial amount of time is spent liaising with representatives of other organisations, including the police, trading standards, environmental health and farmers.  
Inspectors write reports and gives advice to the police, vets and the public. They may be required to give advice in court. The ISPCA also finds homes for unwanted animals.  
Inspectors normally travel around a local area which may be county-wide. A uniform and some form of protective clothing may have to be worn. There may be a risk of being bitten or attacked by animals.

There are currently six ISPCA Inspectors covering 14 counties.


Tasks & Activitiesheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported tasks and activities for this occupation


Investigate reports of animal attacks or animal cruelty, interviewing witnesses, collecting evidence, and writing reports.


Capture and remove stray, uncontrolled, or abused animals from undesirable conditions, using nets, nooses, or tranquilizer darts as necessary.


Examine animals for injuries or malnutrition, and arrange for any necessary medical treatment.


Remove captured animals from animal-control service vehicles and place animals in shelter cages or other enclosures.


Euthanize rabid, unclaimed, or severely injured animals.


Supply animals with food, water, and personal care.


Clean facilities and equipment such as dog pens and animal control trucks.


Prepare for prosecutions related to animal treatment, and give evidence in court.


Educate the public about animal welfare, and animal control laws and regulations.


Contact animal owners to inform them that their pets are at animal holding facilities.

Work Activities header image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported work activities in this occupation.


Communicating with Persons Outside Organization:  Communicating with people outside the organization, representing the organization to customers, the public, government, and other external sources. This information can be exchanged in person, in writing, or by telephone or e-mail.


Handling and Moving Objects:  Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.


Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events:  Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.


Performing for or Working Directly with the Public:  Performing for people or dealing directly with the public. This includes serving customers in restaurants and stores, and receiving clients or guests.


Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others:  Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.


Making Decisions and Solving Problems:  Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.


Performing General Physical Activities:  Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.


Getting Information:  Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.


Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships:  Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.


Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings:  Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.

Knowledge header image

The following is a list of the five most commonly reported knowledge areas for this occupation.


Law and Government:  Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.


Public Safety and Security:  Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.


English Language:  Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.


Customer and Personal Service:  Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.


Education and Training:  Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

Skillsheader image

The following is a list of the most commonly reported skills used in this occupation.


Critical Thinking:   Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.


Active Listening:   Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.


Speaking:   Talking to others to convey information effectively.


Monitoring:   Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.


Judgment and Decision Making:   Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.


Service Orientation:   Actively looking for ways to help people.


Reading Comprehension:   Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.


Active Learning:   Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.


Social Perceptiveness:   Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.


Time Management:   Managing one's own time and the time of others.

Personal Qualitiesheader image

As an inspector you must have compassion for animals as well as the ability to cope with emergencies. You should have a firm but approachable personality as you may be dealing with people who are angry or distressed.  
Good communication skills are essential for confrontational situations and for writing reports and liaising with various authorities. Some situations may require tact.  
You should have an objective attitude to animal welfare, as it may sometimes be necessary to destroy animals in order to prevent suffering. You should also be reasonably physically fit as this can, at times, be a fairly active occupation.

Related Occupationsheader image

Contactsheader image


Organisation: Irish Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
  Address: National Animal Centre, Derrylogher Lodge, Keenagh, Co. Longford
  Tel: (043) 3325035
  Email: Click here
  Url Click here


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Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...

...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Animals & Veterinary Science

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