Need Assistance? 01384 442752 (UK)


Duration (approx) 600 hours
Qualification Certificate


The Certificate in Animal Husbandry is a foundation level course suitable for students who wish to gain knowledge related to companion animals and livestock.

 The qualification consists of 600 hours of study divided into core and elective modules of study.

Core studies include the study of animal anatomy and physiology, animal health care, and animal feed and nutrition. Choose three elective modules to suit you and your requirements. 

Elective units may include Horse Care I, II and III; Animal Breeding; Dairy Cattle; Beef Cattle; Pigs; Calf Rearing; Sheep; Recognising Animal Diseases; and Natural Animal Health Care.


Core ModulesThese modules provide foundation knowledge for the CERTIFICATE IN ANIMAL HUSBANDRY VAG012
Elective ModulesIn addition to the core modules, students study any 3 of the following 11 modules.

It's easy to enrol...

Select a payment plan:  

Select a learning method  



  • Study in your own home at your own pace.
  • Learn from industry experts - our tutors!  
  • Understand more about animal husbandry.
  • Gain a useful qualification in the agriculture field.
To gain the Certificate in Animal Husbandry, you have to complete six modules. 
There is an assignment at the end of each lesson, which you should complete and send to your tutor for marking.
Your tutor can offer advice throughout the course.
At the end of each module, there is also an examination. 

Sample Course Notes - It all Starts with Good Food
Animals are what they eat.
If they are underfed, over fed or poorly fed; their condition suffers, their ability to fight disease diminishes; and their likely lifespan will probably diminish. Every aspect of an animal, inside and out, is affected by their food, right down to their skin, fur and/or feathers.

General nutrition

An animal with suboptimal nutrition - whether it is due to illness, poor feeding practices or a parasite burden - will reflect this state in their coat or plumage. It is considered a sign of an unacceptable parasite burden for the coat to stand proud – meaning it does not smooth nicely, nor show a “healthy sheen”. Even on a warm day the animal will appear cold. The coat is often dull and lifeless – an issue which cannot be resolved by any means other than an effective parasite control program.

Parasites affect the animal by competing for resources. Internal parasites will compete for food, consuming nutrients the animal’s needs. External parasites live on biological animal products, such as skin cells and blood. These parasites increase the nutrition requirements of the animal to compensate for supporting the animal and its parasite load.

In situations where the animal demonstrates this appearance, ensuring parasite control and optimal nutrition will return the animal to a healthy state – one that will be reflected in the coat, brightness of the eyes and physical vigour – all essential components of presenting an animal at its best. To ensure a final ‘product’ which does this, you must always start with a healthy and well-nourished animal. An effective grooming regime will review the animal for signs of external parasites and encompass treatment in consultation with the animals’ owner. This program needs to encompass both internal and external parasites.

Fats and oils: There are some feeds which enhance the natural sheen of an animal’s coat or plumage. These are sourced from oil-producing plants. Feeds can be supplemented with these oils in small doses. For instance, horses may have a small quantity of vegetable oil mixed through their feed. Care must be taken when adding liquid oils as they provide a specific type of energy and used in excess make the feed unpalatable.

Oilseed meals are also excellent for enhancing coats and plumage. These include cottonseed, sunflower and soybean meal. A similar result is achieved in dogs using raw eggs.


Micronutrition is a much overlooked component of feeding and has many effects on the health and appearance of an animal. Micronutrients are usually elemental ions such as calcium, magnesium and zinc. Zinc in particular has been identified as being important for skin health, and bone health is connected to calcium intake.

Each species will have different requirements, so it is an idea to investigate this for each type of animal you are dealing with. However, you must remember that micronutrition is a specialised field which is still being investigated in detail. While you can use estimated requirements as a guide, you must use your judgment in the application of these guidelines. For instance, if you have a dog which is on the small side for its type, then it will require slightly less of the micronutrient in question.

It is a good idea to provide a mineral supplement to animals in a form they can self -regulate, for instance a lick block. Animals are instinctive eaters and will be drawn to the mineral block when they need it. This is a good way of preventing issues with excesses of certain nutrients. Some other examples of micronutrient supplements are dolomite and seaweed meal. Molasses is also a good source of micronutrition which also provides some macronutritients. It is highly palatable to farm animals however, and care must be taken to avoid the mess associated with free access to this feed. It also has laxative properties, so animals with unlimited access may find their digestive process altered.

Water Requirements

All animals require clean, fresh water to survive. The water requirements based on physiological needs of all captive animals will vary based on:

  • · Water and electrolyte content in food provided
  • · The ambient temperature and humidity
  • · Activity level of the animal

Water quality can also have a large effect on the health of animals. Minerals in water can have positive influences on animal health, however high levels of minerals in water can be toxic.

To ensure that water quality is high, anyone working with animals should make sure that it is kept free from contaminants such as faecal matter. Water should be changed regularly and stored appropriately. Water containers should be located out of direct sunlight and suit the habits of the animal (e.g. wallowing, drinking, and swimming). Containers should not be able to spill and should be easy to access and clean as needed.

Any Questions?

The Animal Husbandry certificate is a great course for anyone interested in working in animal husbandry or who wants to increase their existing knowledge.

  • Improve your job and career prospects
  • Expand your existing knowledge of animal husbandry
  • Learn more about agricultural practices
  • Study online or by distance learning
  • Work at your own pace to fit in around your work and home commitments

If you have any questions at all, our animal husbandry tutors are happy to help.

Please click here to contact a tutor Or Request a course handbook here.


Courses can be started anytime from anywhere in the world!

Meet some of our academics

Alison Pearce (general)P.G.Cert. Ed., M.Ecotourism, S.Sc. (Hons). Alison has held many positions including: University Lecturer, Writer, Quality Assurance Manager, Research Technician, Vet Nurse and stockwoman. Over 30 years industry experience, mostly in Australia and the UK.. Alison originally graduated with an honors degree in science from university and beyond that has completed post graduate qualifications in education and eco-tourism. She has managed veterinary operating theatre, responsible for animal anaesthesia, instrument preparation, and assistance with surgical techniques and procedures.
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.
Marius Erasmus Subsequent to completing a BSc (Agric) degree in animal science, Marius completed an honours degree in wildlife management, and a masters degree in production animal physiology. Following the Masters degree, he has worked for 9 years in the UK, and South Africa in wildlife management, dairy, beef and poultry farming.

Check out our eBooks

Horse CareThis book is an accumulation of information from biology, agricultural science and veterinary medicine. It looks to explore and explain the fundamentals of appropriate horse care aims and techniques. In doing so it will consider horsemanship as a combination of art and science.
PoultryPoultry are entertaining as pets and life sustaining as a commercial product! Whether you are seeking a book as a beginner poultry keeper or if you are embarking on a new career in poultry production or management, this book is for you. Easy to read, easy to understand and packed with easy to implement practical advice. Know how to care for the health and wellbeing of poultry and make production a commercially viable enterprise.
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.
Caring for DogsA book for both students and dog owners. This book has been designed to complement our dog care and pet care courses; but also to provide a sound foundation for choosing the right breed, and caring for a dog whether as a pet, or a working animal. Contents cover Breeds, Creating a healthy home for dogs, legal issues, dog biology, recognising poor health, parasites, illnesses, nutrition, reproduction, dog psychology, behavioural development, training tips, behaviour problems, grooming, working in the dog industry, and more.