ANIMAL HUSBANDRY CERTIFICATE COURSE
- 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.
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.
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.
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.