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Animal care training is an obvious choice for those that have a passion for animal welfare. Whether you’ve dreamt of working with animals from a young age, or have decided later in life – perhaps following a career in a completely different field – that this is what you really want to do, our animal care courses will give you the underlying knowledge and skills needed to succeed in the animal care sector.

Subject overview

If you’re looking to pursue a career where you can combine a love of animals with varied, rewarding work, then working in the animal care sector could be the perfect fit for you!

As an animal care professional you could work in a variety of different environments, such as a kennels, cattery, stables, animal hospital or rescue centre. Depending on the role you choose to undertake; your duties could range from cleaning, feeding and medicating animals, to educating the public on animal welfare and preparing animals for rehoming. You might also have the opportunity, with further training, to move into more specialised roles, for instance working in hydrotherapy or offering training and behavioural advice.

There is no denying that working with animals comes with many challenges; an average shift often involves working long hours, and can be physically and emotionally demanding, particularly if you are working alongside animals that have been abused and neglected. However, the benefits that come from having a career that contributes towards animal health is very fulfilling, for instance seeing an animal recover from injury or be rehomed to a loving family can make all the hard work worthwhile.

Job vacancies in the animal care sector are often very competitive; you can give yourself a head start by pursuing as much work experience as possible and undertaking animal care qualifications relevant to the job. Work experience will not only look good on your CV, but it will allow you to get a real insight into what the work involves and whether it is for you.

Those looking to work in the animal care industry should be hard working, motivated, passionate about animals and willing to undertake the necessary animal care training in order to succeed. You will need to enjoy working as part of a team but also be able to work with little or no supervision. As well as having patience and the ability to communicate with the animals, you should also have good people skills, as working with animals often involves significant contact with people; from rehoming an animal, to teaching people to train their animals or speaking about animal welfare in public.

Why choose to study animal care at The College of Animal Welfare?

  • Experienced and supportive teaching staff

We are very proud of the fact that all of our staff delivering our animal care courses have significant industry experience and knowledge under their belts; they all share a common passion for pushing the profession forward. They do this by helping students to get the most out of their formal training and become the best animal carers they can be.

  • Gain real long term job prospects

Job prospects within animal care are often competitive, so by undertaking formal training you put yourself at an advantage by gaining a qualification that demonstrates your skills and knowledge to employers. To explore the opportunities available, you can visit our jobs board, which advertises current animal care jobs from time-to-time.

  • Flexible animal care qualifications

It is important to us that the opportunity to undertake our courses is open to everyone that has the dedication needed to succeed in the profession, regardless of background. As such our animal care courses are available in a variety of different formats such as online, in the workplace and at college. We can offer you the opportunity to study within a community of like-minded students and staff, who all share a common passion for animal welfare and a commitment to pushing forward what is already an exciting and rewarding profession.


Undertaking formal animal care qualifications afford students a variety of professional opportunities. Depending on your personal circumstances, career goals and skills, you could pursue employment in, for example, a zoo, cattery/ kennels or rescue centre, perhaps looking to take on a supervisory or managerial role over time. Positions that you could consider include:

Please note some of these links take you to external sites and therefore the accuracy of these pages is dependent on each individual site.

If you would like to find out more about some of the career opportunities and animal care jobs available, please consider coming along to one or our FREE annual Careers With Animals Day at our Huntingdon or Leeds centre. It is well worth attending and you will come away with lots of information and new ideas. We have trade stands with representatives from different areas of the animal care sector such as Guide Dogs, The British Horse Society, The Blue Cross, The Kennel Club and African Conservation Experience. Trade stands vary from year to year so please contact us in advance if you are attending to meet one particular organisation.

Alternatively, please feel free to contact us if you would like to have an informal chat about your options; a member of our administration team would be happy to help you.