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Animal Care – BTEC Level 2 Diploma

This course is designed to improve your employment prospects by providing you with opportunities to develop your personal and vocational skills. The course will prepare you for employment in pet shops, with animal collections, animal rescue and possibly veterinary surgeries. If you are already working in these areas you are invited to apply so that you may develop your knowledge and skills. You must have a genuine interest in working with animals and have a caring personality. You must be highly motivated and be able to show a commitment to animal welfare.

Entry Requirements

You need a minimum of five GCSEs at grade D or above including English and Maths or Science or a Level 1 qualification and have a willingness to work in all conditions.

– Previous employment with animals will help your application

– Evidence of recent Tetanus vaccination


Course Content

You will study the following units:

Work Related Experience in Animal Care – you will develop important knowledge and skills relating to employment in the animal care industry. This will cover employment in professions including animal nursing and grooming, pet shops and retailing, zoos, kennels or in the service sector of the industry.

Animal Accommodation – You will learn how to clean out and care for the animals and how to maintain their housing.

Animal Feeding – You will learn how to recognise, prepare and select the feeding equipment and foodstuffs needed to keep an animal healthy. You will also learn about the different life stages and how to feed animals during these stages.

Animal Health and Welfare – You will explore the importance of responsible pet ownership including health and welfare considerations for domestic animals. This unit also introduces the aims and principles of first aid and commonly occurring injuries.

Introduction to Animal and Plant Biology – You will learn the basic concepts of biology. Biology is the science of life and living organisms, showing us how animals breathe, grow, live and reproduce. You will study how cells, tissues, systems and structures provide the key to many different aspects of animal care and gain an understanding of how animal bodies work.

Animal Behaviour and Handling – You will learn the importance of understanding normal and abnormal behaviour in animals. You will identify these behaviours and learn how to observe, interpret and record the behaviour, and investigate how evolution and external and internal factors can influence an animal’s behaviour.

Care of Exotic Animals – You will learn how to care for a range of commonly found exotic animals. This unit will help you to develop safe working practices, essential for providing successful animal welfare and employment in the industries.

How will I be taught?

Coursework is undertaken within College, this involves producing written assignments & projects. You will also undertake practical work in the College Animal Unit and offsite at an Equine Establishment. There are 120 hours of work experience on this course – this includes 2 weeks offsite at a placement.

Examples of work experience locations: veterinary practices, riding & livery yards, Sea Life Centre, catteries & kennels, grooming parlours, RSPCA or dog warden, wildlife sanctuaries or rescue centres & pet shops (including exotic).

How will I be assessed?

There are no formal examinations. Assignments are graded Pass, Merit or Distinction.

Will I need any extra equipment?

You will need to provide paper, writing materials, Wellington boots and waterproof clothing. If required laboratory coats can be purchased through College.

What qualifications will I get?

You will be awarded the BTEC Level 2 Diploma in Animal Care on successful completion of the course.

What will it allow me to do in the future?

You may wish to go on to the BTEC Level 3 Diploma in Animal Management or go straight in to employment. You may find employment at your work experience placements.

You may also undertake further training whilst employed as a veterinary nurse, a dog groomer, in kennel management or in pet shop management.

Course Information

You should allow at least 10 hours per week for home study.

All students require an up to date tetanus vaccination before starting the course.

Additional Costs – There will be several visits to animal collections and shows. Costs will be kept to a minimum but are likely to be approximately £10.00 per term. There will be optional and compulsory visits. Example of trips & visits: Marwell Zoo, Birdworld, Chessington Zoo, pet shops & pet shows.

Students, aged over 19 on the 1 September of the year the course commences will be required to pay tuition and assessment fees. If you are in receipt of an income based benefit please ask about financial assistance, which may be available.

If you would like further advice or guidance please contact Reception on freephone 0800 056 0511.

Office Use: 05/10/2015

Further Information


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