The Best Shoes For Vet Techs in 2020

Between the fur, the drool, and the other bodily fluids, vet techs need shoes that can handle whatever animal grime might be in their path. They also need to be durable and comfortable for long hours of sitting, standing, running, and anything unexpected!

That’s a lot to look for in a shoe.

But fear not! We have done the research for you and have some answers. Read on for the best shoes for vet techs in 2020. 

Top 5 Vet Tech ShoesWhy It's BestOur Rating
ASICS Jolt Women's Running ShoeDependable support for long days★★★★★
Showudesigns Women's Fashion Sneakers Cute designs with a breathable mesh★★★★★
Merrell Women's J35518Vibram sole is durable and has great support★★★★★
Skechers Women's Comfort FlexMade with medical professionals in mind★★★★★
KEEP NURSING Ocean Women's Memory Foam Nursing ShoesCute prints and memory foam soles★★★★★
Columbia Men's Five Forks MID Waterproof Hiking ShoeWaterproof boot that can handle messes★★★★★

Best Shoes For Vet Techs 

ASICS Jolt Women’s Running Shoe

Image of the ASICS Jolt Women's Running Shoe, Glacier Grey/Aqua Splash/White, 10 W US

The ASICS Jolt Women’s Running Shoe is built for comfort and breathability. It’s a synthetic mesh shoe, which means that it will be highly breathable and will better mold itself around your foot. Mesh material is softer, breathes better, and requires less wear-in time for maximum comfort.

While a leather shoe option would offer greater durability, it would also require more time to become comfortable for daily use. Even then, it would not allow for nearly the amount of air to move around your foot as this mesh option.

Mesh lacks the durability of leather but, an AHAR OUTSOLE (ASICS High Abrasion Rubber) is placed strategically around the outsole of the shoe for increased life and wear time. 

Of particular note for the Jolt Running Shoe is its gel-cushioned heel and removable sock liner. This offers greater shock resistance and provides the wearer the option of an orthopedic shoe insert if desired. All around, this shoe is made for comfort, and while initially designed for runners, it would serve any vet tech well for those long days.

I do have one minor complaint to highlight though: this shoe only goes up to the D (wide) size in width. Most consumers won’t be bothered by this, but I at least have size E (Extra Wide) requirements and would be unable to fit the Jolt on my foot at all, let alone find comfort in it. Again, anyone with less wide feet than I should find no problem here, but for those in the same boat as me, it’s something to take note of.

Showudesigns Women’s Fashion Sneakers

Image of the Showudesigns Women's Fashion Sneakers Breathable Sport Shoes Cat Cute Athletic Lace Ups Casual Walking Shoes for Teen Girls Running Gym Exercise Shoes Szie 8.5

The Showudesigns Women’s Fashion Sneakers is a great pick for vet techs looking for a shoe that screams fashion with a wider-than-normal variety of photo and color prints to select from. That doesn’t mean that this shoe falls short in other areas though.

The Showudesign sneaker is made from a mesh and rubber mix, rubber for the sole and mesh for the upper shoe, and is made specifically to shape and mold tightly to your foot. By hugging the foot so firmly, this shoe helps prevent excess perspiration to gather around your feet and keeps their environment dry.

This is also a very lightweight shoe, which is great for jobs on the go, and it would be a breeze to throw a backup pair in a bag if ever needed. Most other reviews and comments we’ve seen about this shoe are focused around its color and bright look. While overall it appears to be a good shoe otherwise, the pop and wow factor seem to be one of its main features.

Merrell Women’s J35518

Image of the Merrell Women's J35518, Bright Red, 6.5 M US

The Merrell Women’s shoe is a super durable and lightweight shoe made special by the inclusion of a classic Vibram sole.

A Vibram sole is one of the most durable and slip-resistant options on the market for footwear. What makes this shoe sole special is its rubber lug and design made for extreme traction and surface stick. In addition, they are water-resistant and hyper durable.  And, they’re easy to clean and are machine washable.

Besides the sole, this shoe is pretty standard compared to others we’ve researched. It’s a mesh shoe for lightweight movement with a snug fit and comes with a shock-absorbing heel to lessen impacts.

I like the look of this shoe. The color-pop webbing and ghillie laces stand out to my eye, and the overall color pallet is appealing. And, that Vibram sole is a great extra addition to take into consideration.

Skechers Women’s Comfort Flex

Image of the Skechers Women's Comfort Flex Sr Hc Pro Health Care Professional Shoe,gray/multi,6.5 Wide US

The Skechers Comfort Flex is the first on our list to eschew a mesh blend for a canvas or textile design.

While mesh breathes better, the nice thing about canvas is that it’s much more resistant to wear and tear. It’s also waterproof.

Mesh is made up of loosely woven synthetic materials, whereas canvas is tightly woven and more often made up of natural fibers. The tight weaving of this canvas shoe will help keep your foot dry and will probably last longer, but you’ll definitely notice a difference in breathability compared to a mesh option.

Adding to the comfort factor of these shoes is air-cooled memory foam insoles for better long hour standing and moving comfort.

A watertight shoe in canvas might be better for techs in rural areas, whereas mesh might serve greater in a clinic setting. Either way, this shoe would be a good pick.

Ocean Women’s Memory Foam Shoes

Image of the Ocean Women's Cute Memory Foam Nursing Shoes - Printed - Florence (9, Paws and Hearts W/B)

The Ocean Women’s Cute Memory Foam Shoe is great for quick cleaning, long hours standing, and can be easily slipped on and off due to their elastic band and no-laces required design.

This shoe is lightweight and made from polyester, thus making them super easy to wipe clean and fast to dry. They don’t breathe quite as well as a mesh shoe, but they land in a decent middle place between that and a canvas sneaker. Like several other options we’ve reviewed, this shoe comes with a memory foam insole for added cushioning. It will make those long days a bit easier on your feet and is well worth considering.

One nice addition of this shoe is that it comes with special profession related prints and designs. The look is ultimately not important to feel and use, but these custom prints are a nice touch.

Beware though, customer feedback often has been that this shoe runs a little bigger than listed size. With that in mind, it might be important to only buy these from somewhere you can exchange them for another if the fit is not quite right.

Columbia Men’s Five Forks Hiking Shoe

Image of the Columbia Men's Five Forks MID Waterproof Hiking Shoe, Dark Grey, Flame, 8 Regular US

The Columbia Men’s Hiking Shoe is the first true boot on our list and comes with an interesting OMNI-TECH design for a waterproof shoe that retains high breathability and mobility.

While mostly made from mesh, this boot brings added comfort and waterproofing with a layer of suede overlays within and around the sock line. A boot wholely of suede leather would probably be too restrictive and airtight for an active job like a vet tech, but this mesh/suede mix makes for an interesting option. The comfort of leather with the benefits of mesh, a great combination.

This is not the most eye-catching shoe, and the suede overlays could be an issue when first breaking it in, but having the best of both mesh and leather is a nice and unique addition to this list. It’s durable, comfortable, and waterproof. A solid option.

If you want more boot options, check out the best boots for standing on your feet all day.

Skechers Women’s Flex Appeal 2.0

Image of the Skechers Women's Flex Appeal 2.0 Fashion Sneaker, Black/White Multi, 9.5 W US

The Skechers Women’s Flex is a super flexible option of ankle shoe for vet techs on the go.

This shoe is 100% textile, meaning it has moderate breathability and durability. It also has a memory foam insole for extra comfort. It won’t be as durable as many of the shoes on this list, but it’s very lightweight, has the clout of being a Skechers product, and it’s toned down aesthetic is a good pick for a professional look.

Skechers Flex comes with a rubber sole for strong gripping power. But, going down as low as the ankle comes off as a minus in my book for a vet tech shoe, as it places your feet in the hazard zone for spills and fluids. It’ll be fine for long hours standing and moving though, and, depending on the kind of vet tech you are, that might be all that matters.

Nurse Mates

Image of the Nurse Mates - Womens - Velocity Grey,7

The Nurse Mates Women’s shoe is the one and only 100% leather shoe option on this list of best shoes for vet techs. The nice thing about a leather shoe is that it is very durable. In fact, these Nurse Mates might just be the most durable shoe on this list. Leather is made to last. It might become crinkled with age, but you’d have to wear them for a very long time to do any real damage to them.

Leather is also typically easy to clean. It’s a smooth and wipable surface, meaning any liquid or material found upon these shoes will come out with a quick clean and has a far lesser chance of staining than canvas or mesh surfaces.

You might be wondering, if leather shoes are so great, then why is this the only one on the list? Mesh and canvas shoes both, in general, breathe more than leather.  Leather shoes need time to wear in, and they need to fit just right to remain comfortable. Mesh and Canvas shoes have some give, leather shoes often do not.

If you’re willing to give a leather shoe some time to get to the level of comfort you need, perhaps having a backup pair of something else in the meanwhile, the Nurse Mates are a good option for best shoes for vet techs.

Our Buying Criteria For Vet Tech Shoes

Mesh, Canvas, or Other: Best Shoes For Veterinary Professionals

Vet techs are often on their feet or on the move for much of the day. How well their feet hold up matters a lot. With that in mind, we first looked at shoes that would offer the best breathability and durability. Mesh and canvas shoes both came up in our research, and either would make a fine fit for those in this noble profession.

Always remember, in general, mesh shoes offer greater airflow and movement, whereas canvas fits are more durable and come waterproofed.

Fashion and Appeal for Veterinary Sneakers

Especially in a clinic or office setting, look and feel can be important. Vet Techs don’t only deal with animals, but their owners too, and how your overall look comes together can be important. With that in mind, we made sure to look for options that had some, if not a lot, of customizability and flair.

FAQs for Vet Tech Shoes

What are the best shoes for standing all day?

Anything with a supportive sole and a comfortable, breathable material will work for long days on your feet. Memory foam or gel soles are ideal. Sticking a supportive insole in your shoe can help as well. 

Are Crocs good for vet techs?

While they are easy to clean, they aren’t the most durable and they don’t offer the most support. I would recommend a sturdier show.

Should vet techs wear clogs?

A lot of people love Dansko clogs in the medical world. Whether you are caring for people or pets, clogs can be a great choice. Like we’ve mentioned above, though, these can take some time to break in. They are often expensive as well. 

Final Thoughts, and Top Recommendation

Our list of best shoes for vet techs has covered three types of vet tech shoes: canvas, leather, and mesh. An important take away has been that mesh shoes have better airflow and a tighter fit, canvas is more waterproof and durable, and leather is the most long-lasting of all but takes some time to fit right.

It’s also was important to find shoes that are sufficiently cushioned for those long days at the clinic or on call. Memory foam, gel-insulated, suede, all are options for keeping your feet healthy and you standing shift-long. Anything without that extra padding is something to avoid, and gel-insulated generally seems the way to go, but memory foam can get the job done too.

All of that being said, the Merril Woman’s Hiking Shoe is my favorite and best recommendation. It’s eye-catching, makes for a great fit and feel, and sports that special Vibram sole for extra grip and durability.

We hope you found our list helpful, and that your search for the best vet tech shoes is over. Thanks for reading, and happy shoe shopping!


Leave a Comment