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Animal Care

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    Internationally Accredited by ICOES
    Fully CPD/CE Certified
    Instant Free PDF Certificate
    Recommended by 95% of Students
    24/7 Access

    Meet the expert


    About the course

    Know your pet intimately before getting intimate

    Every pet owner knows how intriguing and complex animals can be. Each creature is endearingly individual and full of surprises.

    Taking care of all aspects of a pet’s life can be a tricky business. Cats can be spirited and mysterious. Dogs can be untameable but adorable. Before we get you to the hands on part of their personal care we spend a lot of time taking you through their psychology so you fully understand their habits, instincts and development first.

    4 legs, 2 legs or no legs at all!

    All kinds of pets need specific care for their type and we include care on many commonly loved creatures:

    • For rabbits & guinea pigs we help you understand the living environment and exercise that’s ideal, take you through common problems and diseases and how to give the best care.

    • As well as how to care for hamsters, gerbils, mice & exotic rats, we help you understand their behaviour and how breeds differ.

    • Birds need special understanding, from small to large, parrots to birds of prey. Learn about traits, common diseases and how to prevent spread.

    • Keeping fish as pets needs careful attention. Discover best practice so you maintain clean and healthy species.

    • For those of you who love reptiles, we delve into the world of snakes, lizards, turtles, terrapins & tortoises and outline some common challenges & solutions.

    Once you can see things from a pet’s point of view, you’re better equipped to give them a comfortable life and develop a harmonious relationship that’s fulfilling for you and them.

    Get started today and awaken your animal instincts!


    What you will learn

    You’ll discover the answers to questions like:

    • What’s normal behaviour for a dog?
    • What level of understanding does my young cat have?
    • Are certain traits specific to some breeds?
    • What is my puppy trying to communicate to me?
    • What do those strange cat sounds mean?

    What’s going on with my pet?

    We’ll also give you good insight into what can cause a pet to be unhappy or stressed with topics like:

    • Eating disorders
    • Excess scratching
    • Aggression
    • Separation anxiety
    • Soiling


    International Open Academy courses are designed for anyone with an interest in learning. No formal qualifications are required to study with us. Our courses are suitable if you want to learn new skills, start a new career, or if you’re already working in a particular industry and wish to upgrade your talents and enhance your resume.


    Course Breakdown

    Module 1: What Is Normal Behaviour For A Dog?
    • Socialization
    • Dogs and learning
    • Juniors and seniors
    • Habits – digging, chewing, and more!
    Module 2: If Dogs Could Talk
    • Body language
    • Stances
    • Body language reference table
    • Smells and sniffing
    • Urine and feces
    • Vocal language
    Module 3: A Dog's Eye View
    • Fear
    • Anxiety
    • Aggression
    • Scent marking
    • Elimination
    • Issues at feeding time
    Module 4: Normal Cat Behaviour
    • How cats’ behaviour develops as they grow
    • Feeding time rules
    • Sleeping and biological rhythms
    • Sexual behaviour
    • Maternal instincts
    • Aggression
    Module 5: When Cat Behaviour Is Abnormal
    • Peculiarities of certain breeds
    • When play is not play
    • Moody & sensitive times
    • Differentiating instinct from conditioning
    • Differentiating between behavioural and health issues
    Module 6: Cats Heightened Senses And Communication
    • Reading body language
    • Sense of smell
    • Sense of hearing
    • Distinctive cat sounds
    • What’s she trying to tell me?
    Module 7: Cat Care And Health
    • Understanding aggression and how to deal with it
    • Scratching
    • House training
    • Excessive vocalisation
    • Discipline
    • Preventative health care
    • Responsible ownership
    • Effects of ageing
    Module 8: Specific Information On Rabbits & Guinea Pigs
    • Different breeds
    • Common problems and diseases
    • Providing an adequate living environment
    • Exercise
    • Usual care needed
    Module 9: Specific Information On Hamsters, Gerbils, Mice & Exotic Rats
    • Different breeds
    • Understanding behaviour
    • Common problems and diseases
    • Providing an adequate living environment
    • Usual care needed
    Module 10: Specific Information On Birds
    • General tips on caring for birds
    • Small birds
    • Larger birds & birds of prey
    • Poultry
    • The parrot family
    • Recognising common diseases and preventing spread
    Module 11: Specific Information On Fish
    • How to care for fish
    • Tropical fish
    • Cold water fish
    • Marine fish
    • Recognising disease and what to do
    Module 12: Specific Information On Reptiles
    • Challenges of keeping reptiles as pets
    • How to care for reptiles
    • Turtles, terrapins & tortoises
    • Snakes & lizards
    • Recognising disease and what to do


    Who is this course for

    This course will be of great interest to animal lovers and professionals in the pet care industry who would like to better understand the behaviour of animals, how to properly care for pets, and to any learner who is interested in pet care as a future industry to work in.

    This is also a great resource for those who would like to own animals and want to provide the highest level of care for their pets. 

    Career path

    Candidates with an interest in working with animals

    Anyone interested in a career in pet grooming, pet sitting, dog walking, veterinary medicine or animal care

    Those interested in owning animals, volunteering at animal shelters, or fostering animals.

    Existing animal care workers in pursuit of promotion


    Certification details

    To receive certification, you must:

    1. Complete every page of the course
    2. Score at least 55% on the exam at the end of the course
    3. That's it!

    After successfully completing the course, you will immediately receive your PDF course certificate so you can instantly add it to your CV and display your achievement. You can also request a hard copy certificate to be sent to your postal address for a small printing and posting fee.

    All our courses are accredited by the International Council for Online Educational Standards - www.icoes.org (accreditation number ICOES/00763/13/36). Most of our courses will earn you credits through Continuing Professional Development (CPD) / Continuing Education (CE). Check for the CPD logo on the course page.

    CPD points are accepted and recognized by employers from both the public and private sectors, and academic institutions across the UK and internationally.

    International Open Academy is also an officially approved TQUK (Training Qualifications UK) center, with the TQUK Center Number: C001157

    TQUK is a national awarding body recognized by the UK Government and regulated by Ofqual (The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation).

    For further details, please visit https://internationalopenacademy.com/accreditation