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Duration (approx) 100 hours
Qualification Statement of Attainment

Animal Diseases Distance Learning Course. Special Offer Price for a short time only.

Learn more about the diagnosis of animal disease.

Courses can be started anytime from anywhere in the world!

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Special Offer Diagnosing Animal Disease Course

Understand more about the development and progress of animal disease.

A useful course for anyone working with animals or interested to learn more.

The Animal Diseases course has ten lessons -

Lesson 1. How Animal Diseases are Diagnosed

Conducting  clinical examinations, gross and clinical pathology, information to collect and how to collect it (live animal and necropsy samples), specialist support services to assist in diagnosis (i.e. types of laboratories, specialist vets etc.).

Lesson 2. Diagnostic Testing

Pathways followed to detect and diagnose different types of diseases, information to be supplied with samples for diagnostic testing, and diagnostic techniques

Lesson 3. Viral Diseases

Characteristics of viruses and the significance of a range of viral diseases that affect animals. You will study viral taxonomy, types and structure of viruses, virus replication cycle, transmission, and some common viral conditions.

Lesson 4. Bacteria and Fungal Diseases

This lesson looks at the characteristics of bacterial and fungal organisms. Topics include: laboratory identification, controlling infections, specimen collection, and important disease conditions.

Lesson 5. Parasitological Conditions

Discuss and differentiate a range of conditions that are caused by parasites. Topics include: Terminology and classification, life cycles, protozoa, helminths, and arthropods.

Lesson 6. Metabolic and Nutritional Conditions

Lesson covers a range of common metabolic conditions affecting cattle, horses, pigs, sheep/goats, cats and dogs

Lesson 7. Poisoning

Discuss and differentiate some common disorders that result from poisoning or toxins. These include: Cardio-respiratory, Central Nervous System (CNS), dermatological, gastrointestinal, hepatological, and haematological disorders.

Lesson 8. Inherited Conditions (Genetic Disorders)

Discuss types of genetic inheritance, and give examples of genetic diseases affecting horses, dogs, and cats.

Lesson 9. Other Conditions and Disorders

Identify and discuss miscellaneous conditions such as allergies,dehydration, and age related conditions.

Lesson 10. Research Project

In this project you will evaluate symptoms of ill-health or disease displayed by a set of animals, and go through the process of identifying the problem and deciding on a course of treatment.

Common signs of an ill or injured animal

It is impossible for even the best educated animal health expert to monitor every aspect of an animal's health all the time. On a farm, the farmer can have hundreds of animals to deal with; and in a zoo, the zoo keeper may be dealing with even more. Routine and regular blood tests and medical scans are expensive, invasive, and can be distressing to the animals. 
There are however, simple indicators of ill health, which a well trained animal expert should be able to detect with little more than a glance at the animal. Learning to manage animal health involves learning to notice things such as the following; knowing what these indicators mean, and knowing how to respond to them. 
  • The animal not eating as much as usual – this is usually the first sign you will notice
  • It may also drink more or less water than normal, depending on the illness.
  • An animal standing by itself away from the herd
  • Animal limping or dragging a leg
  • Discharge from eyes, nose, or vaginal area
  • There may be abnormal lumps
  • The eyes may be dull and the mucous membranes may have changed colour. Deep red membranes indicate fever; pale membranes show anaemia; yellow membranes indicate a liver disorder, while blue-red membranes show heart and circulatory problems, or pneumonia.
  • Animal making unusual noise (bellowing, grunting)
  • Animal acting uncomfortable, getting up and down
  • The animal might be sweating. A cold sweat indicates pain while a hot sweat indicates fever.
  • If the animal is in pain it will probably be restless (getting up and down and pacing about), and it may even be groaning
  • Diarrhoea or straining to defecate
  • Animal not defecating or with very little stool
  • Animal urinating a lot, or not as much as usual
  • Marked weight loss or gain
  • The coat will look dull and dry, and the hairs may stand up.
  • There may the presence of open sores, dandruff, or the loss of hair or fur from the body
  • Behavioural signs - Recognise any significant differences in the behaviour of an animal such as increases in viciousness, lethargy or any other abnormal signs such as excessive head shaking, scratching, licking or biting of certain parts of the body
  • The vital signs of a sick animal will change. The temperature may go up or down. A rise in temperature of one or two degrees usually indicates pain, while a rise of more usually indicates infection.
  • The rate of respiration, and the way the animal breathes could also slow changes. With pain or infection, breathing becomes more rapid. In a very sick animal, breathing can be laboured and shallow.
  • A slightly increased pulse rate suggests pain, while a rapid pulse suggests fever. An irregular pulse can indicate heart trouble. In a very sick animal, the pulse is weak and feeble.
  • A sick animal may also possess foul breath or excessive tarter deposits on the teeth.

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