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Duration (approx) 900 hours
Qualification Advanced Certificate

Study animal care and behaviour by distance learning to improve your job prospects and knowledge of animals.

  • This detailed course covers a wide range of topics from pet care to more unusual pets, such as snakes.
  • You choose the modules that suit you and your interests.

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Study Animal Care and Behaviour with this exciting course. Increase your knowledge of the care and behaviour of animals.

  • Core modules provide a broad foundation in animal behaviour and care.
  • Elective modules enable students to tailor the course to their own areas of interest.
  • Unlimited access to our expert tutors.
  • Start at any time.  Study at your own pace - where and when you want to.


The Advanced Certificate In Animal Care And Behaviour is suitable for anyone involved with working with animals or keeping animals, such as people working in veterinarians, animal rescue, zoos, wildlife sanctuaries, pet grooming, kennels, or pet owners.

The course consists of five core modules. You will study Animal Health Care, Pet Care, Animal Behaviour, Grooming and carry out a research project on an area that interests you.

You will then choose four modules to suit you and your interests.  If you are unsure which module would suit you best, our animal studies tutors are always there to help you.


Animal Health Care VAG100

Pet Care AAG100

Animal Behaviour BAG203

Animal Grooming BAG106

Industry Project BIP000



Choose four from the following:

Animal Breeding BAG301

Dog Psychology and Training BAG221

Dog Care BAG105

Cat Psychology and Training BAG222

Natural Health Care for Animals BAG218

Starting Your Own Business VBS101

Animal Diseases BAG219

Aquarium Management BEN105

Animal Feed and Nutrition BAG202

Animal Anatomy and Physiology BAG101

Ornithology BEN102

Herpetology BEN209

Horse Care I BAG102

Bird Keeping (Aviculture) BAG108

Animal Welfare BAG224


Learn to Make Informed Choices

Pets should be properly matched with their situation. Many animals spend their lives in the company of humans whether it is as a family pet, companion animal, work animal or one trained to take part in sports. Many of these animals are loved and cared for to a greater or lesser extent by those people who keep them.  In some cases however, those animals are not given the level of welfare which most of us would like to see.  Sometimes this can be from lack of education with these animals, and sometimes human ignorance plays the part.  

When owning a pet, or any animal, or deciding if there is a welfare issue, we should refer back to the five freedoms, which can vary slightly depending on location, but all carry the same intention.  

It has been suggested by animal protection groups that all animals have a right to five things:

  • Appropriate Food and Water
  • Appropriate Living Conditions
  • Prevention and Mitigation of Harm
  • Expression of Natural Behaviour
  • Appropriate Handling

When considering the well being of any pet, we must therefore ask;

  • Is this animal provided with an adequate diet for the species, and fresh drinking water?
  • Is this animal in any discomfort, and is the animal provided with the correct environment?
  • Is this animal suffering in any way from pain or injury?
  • Is this animal able to express normal behaviour, and is it able to express natural behaviours within its environment?
  • Is the animal living in fear or distress in any way?  Is the animal being caused any mental or physical suffering in the way it is kept as a pet?

By asking these questions, this allows us to assess the situation for all pets, or working animals, and decide whether their current situation is having a negative impact on their welfare.  



You can start the course at any time.

It is studied by distance learning, so you can study in the comfort of your own home. But this doesn't mean you are all alone in your studies.  Our highly qualified and friendly tutors are there to help you every step of the way.  If you have any questions at all, they are always happy to help.

To complete the course, you are required to study nine 100 hour modules. There is an assignment at the end of each lesson. At the end of each module, there is also an examination which you can take at a time and location to suit you. To pass the course you are required to pass all assignments and eight exams.  There is also an industry project to complete the course.

If you are not sure about going straight to the Advanced Certificate, you can study each of the modules mentioned as a standalone course.



  • Provides foundation learning and speciality options for people working within the animal industry.
  • Provides an ideal learning opportunity for those looking to start a business in pet or animal care.
  • Provides a solid basis of knowledge for those looking to advance their career or develop their business.


Any Questions? 

Our animal behaviour and care tutors are happy to help with any questions you might have about the course, so please -

                                        CLICK TO CONTACT US





Courses can be started anytime from anywhere in the world!

Towergate Insurance welcomes Professional Liability insurance applications from ACS graduates across all disciplines. Click here for more details.

Meet some of our academics

Kara WightKara Wight - Animal Scientist, Photographer and Business woman. BSc (Applied Bioscience and Zoology), HND (Animal Care), HND (Photography & Imaging) Kara gained an HND in Animal Care and graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Applied Bioscience and Zoology. She has a wide range of experience working with animals such dogs, small pets, birds, zoo animals, British wildlife and reptiles. Kara gained this experience working within animal parks, canine rescue centres and a wildlife hospital. She also managed an animal care training facility for a college. At this training facility she instructed and lectured students within Animal Care and Veterinary Nursing from National Certificate level to Higher National Diploma levels. Kara also gained an HND in Photography and Imaging and has 5 years’ experience within this sector. She ran a small portraiture and wedding photography business and also exhibited work in art exhibitions. Kara gained more experience photographing sporting and festival events. Kara currently runs a pet care and training business in the UK and also has entry to undertake her MSc in International Animal Welfare, Ethics and Law this academic year.
Alison Pearce (animal)B.Sc.(Hons) in Animal Science. Masters Degree in Ecotourism. P.G.Cert. Ed. (Science). Alison's first job was in 1982 as a stockwoman, working with pigs in Yorkshire. Within a few years she of that she was working for the University of Western Australia as a Research Technician and instructor with their school of Agricultural Science.In 1989 she moved to Melbourne University as Unit Manager and Instructor in Animal Husbandry. By the mid 1990's she moved back to England to work in Animal Care and Veterinary Nursing at Cambridgeshire College of Agriculture. Throughout her career, Alison has developed and delivered courses in veterinary nursing and animal sciences for vocational colleges and universities in Australia, New Zealand and Australia. She has built a high level of expertise and an outstanding international reputation as an expert in animal sciences.
Dr. Gareth PearceGraduated from the University of Nottingham in 1982 with a B.Sc.(Hons) in Animal Science. Between 82 and 85 worked as Research Assistant and Demonstator in Animal Science at the University of Leeds. Over more than 30 years he has furthered his studies, obtaining eight significant university qualifications including degrees in Veterinary Science, Wildlife Conservation and Animal Behaviour. Gareth has significant teaching experience around the world as a faculty member at eight different universities including Associate Professor at Murdoch University and Director of Studies in Veterinary Science at Cambridge University. He has over 100 prestigious research papers published, and enjoys an outstanding international reputation in the fields of animal and veterinary science.
Cheryl McLardyA scientist, teacher, writer and animal scientist, with more than 20 years experience including: Sports Horse Stud Groom, Stable Manager, Yard Manager, Equine industrial Training Manager, FE Distance Learning Manager. Cheryl has travelled widely, working in England, Scotland, Australia and New Zealand; and is now based in Scotland. She holds a Bachelor of Science (Hons), Higher National Diploma in Horse Management, and a City and Guilds Teaching Certificate.

Check out our eBooks

Animal PsychologyExplore how animals think and comare how this differs between different animals (and humans)
BirdsIdeal for Ornithology students or the budding bird enthusiast, this ebook offers an ideal foundation on birds. Learn to identify birds from around the world with over 130 colour photographs and 117 pages of fascinating bird facts.
Animal Feed & NutritionThe Aniaml Feed and Nutrition ebook is a comprehensive guide to animal feed and the nutritional requirements of different animals.
Animal HealthUnderstand animal health issues, diseases and how identify and manage illnesses and injuries. Animals can become sick for many different reasons -diseases caused by infections, injuries, poisoning, genetic disorders, poor nutrition and other things.