Kick-start your career at two of Perth's leading Animal Rescue Organisations

Learn animal studies at the Cat Haven and Dogs RefugeIf you have dreamed of working with animals and are wondering where to start, we highly recommend ACM20117 Certificate II in Animal Studies to give you the foundation skills and knowledge to commence your career. Our intensive 14 week course based at the Cat Haven and Dogs’ Refuge Home in Shenton Park, is the quickest way to gain this nationally recognised qualification and obtain valuable work experience in two of Perth’s leading animal shelters.

This unique format course also means you do not have to worry about finding  your own work placement.  Your essential practical training will take place in a small group setting with other like-minded students. You will be under the supervision of AVT fully qualified and experienced lecturers and you will participate in classroom based learning as well as online learning.

What will you learn?

During the course you will become familiar with the fundamental principles of working in the animal care industry. In addition to the topics covered in the Certificate II in Animal Studies course, you will be introduced to:-

  • fundamental principles of working in the animal care industry,
  • animal health and well-being,
  • first aid for animals,
  • enrichment for animals and much much more.


Your course structure will be as follows:-

  • On-site Practical Training - Your course commences with a full day of induction training at the Dogs' Refuge Home. You will then be required to spend a day per week for the duration of the course at either the Cat Haven or Dogs' Refuge Home (both located in Shenton Park, WA) to receive the intensive practical training by qualified AVT trainers. All students will be trained at both facilities. Training days will commence at 8.00am and finish around 4.00pm on either a Tuesday or Thursday. We will endeavour to meet your preference of days but this can not be guaranteed and students are expected to participate in ALL practical training days.
  • Online eLearning - You will also require approximately 25 hours per week of home based study for completing theory and preparing and submitting assessments.
Students must:
  • be available to participate in ALL work placement days and class days at AVT and the animal care facility (one day per week - fixed day to be determined by AVT prior to course commencement)
  • be physically capable of restraining animals, handling animal feed e.g. large bags of food of up to 10 kg and standing for extended periods of time
  • have a reliable internet connection and access to a desktop computer or laptop. You will be required to write, submit and in some cases upload assessments and various types of multi-media files online in your own time, therefore we strongly recommend using a desktop or laptop computer for your studies
  • be proficient in speaking and writing in English
  • must be at least 18 years of age
  • due to the required workload and level of study, have a minimum level of schooling up to and including year 10, with a good understanding of science and maths.
This course is highly competitive and has limited places. Therefore, successful students are selected based on prior work experience, education, individual attitude and aptitude. Shortlisted applicants will be interviewed by an AVT team member.

Credit transfers
Students with eligible credit transfers may apply, however due to the course delivery format, 100% attendance is required for orientation/induction and practical placement days and therefore full course fees will apply.

You will become familiar with the fundamental principles of working in the animal care industry, animal health and well-being, environmental sustainability, enrichment for animals and much much more. For a full list of units, please visit this page. noting the following exceptions:-

  • Your nominated elective will be ACMSPE305 Provide basic care of domestic cats.
  • ACMGAS302 Provide enrichment for animals will replace BSBINM201 Process and maintain workplace information.

Certificate II in Animal Studies
Intensive Delivery
14 weeks
Blended learning, 1 day onsite
Learning guides
Dedicated student support
One-on-one mentoring by AVT lecturers
Assessments and Certification
Workplace practical insurance cover
AVT practical kit including uniform, name badge and workbook
Total course fees
Payable via our monthly payment planInitial payment of $1,497 plus
4 x $512 monthly payments

*Fees, inclusions and payment plan amounts are subject to change.

If you decide to withdraw from study for any reason, refunds are not issued. Please see our policies page for full details.

You will be required to wear:-
  • an AVT shirt (supplied by AVT)
  • steel capped shoes (supplied by student),
  • neatly presented, long comfortable work pants suitable for bending and manual work (supplied by student).
"Presentation is key to success"
Many people aspire to work with animals and a Certificate II in Animal Studies can lead to a wide variety of qualification and/or job pathways in the animal care industry including animal welfare carers, veterinary assistants and vet nurses, council and ranger services, wild life carers and animal fauna rehabilitation workers, conservation workers, pet service related business owners, home based pet services, sanctuary management, park rangers, wildlife rangers, pet grooming, animal trainers, cattery attendants, boarding kennel hands, pet day care centres, agistment facilities and retail businesses such as pet shops.

Click here to visit our general Certificate II information page and learn more about career opportunities.

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) and this course

It is our intention for the next intake of this course to go ahead in October. All applicants will be informed on the status of this course including updates relating to COVID-19 restrictions and revised commencement dates if required.

Read COVID-19 FAQs

Why choose an intensive pathway course for Animal Studies?

  • This intensive pathway is designed to meet the prerequisite for Veterinary Nursing – you can gain your qualification in 14 weeks and can then apply for ACM40418 Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing to become a qualified veterinary nurse*
  • Professionally managed and delivered course - with on-site supervision, complete with tutorials and lectures to help you understand and apply theory with ease
  • Qualified lecturers delivering supervised practical training and assessment with a structured study time table to ensure you stay on track and are learning from the best. 
  • No stress! - you do not have to find a work placement for the course. Your entire practical training is completed at reputable animal care facilities alongside other students.
  • This certificate increases your opportunities for employment in the animal care industry and gives recognition towards entry into further studies at a Certificate IV level (eg Certificate IV in Veterinary Nursing).

Animal Care course in Australia

Looking for more details about the Certificate II in Animal Studies qualification? Learn more here

AVT NRT Recognised

Apply Now!

ACM20117 - Intensive Course (October 2020 Intake)
ACM20117 - Intensive Course (2021 March Intake)


COVID related restrictions are currently in place at the shelters. It is our intention for the October intake of this course to go ahead pending permission from the Dogs' Refuge Home and Cat Haven . All applicants will be informed on the status of this course. For detailed information visit this link. This course has limited places with high demand. We reserve the right to close course intakes before the advertised close date. We recommend submitting your application as early as possible.

What students from AVT's other courses say ...

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Alison M April 2019

Having had no animal learning before, I find this course brilliant with clear concise notes, knowledgeable lecturers and RSPCA staff, and especially having the day at the RSPCA is extremely beneficial. Hands on learning and getting interaction with animals is a great help in learning handling behaviours.

Abby G April 2019

This course has taught me the basic care of animals and about animal health in general. This course allows people to get hands on experience and lecturers to provide practical care to animals. Thus; others with an interest in animals will gain and have a positive outcome to the course, alike to me.

Megan B April 2019

Everyone is super helpful if you need anything explained. Skye conducts classes in a relaxed and friendly environment so I feel comfortable joining in, and she is always willing to explain anything until everything is clarified.

Important Course Dates

Next IntakeApplications OpenApplications CloseCourse Commencement
October 2020Apply Now28th August 202012th October 2020
March 2021Register Your InterestMarch 2021

It is our intention for the October intake of this course to go ahead. All applicants will be informed on the status of this course including updates relating to COVID-19 restrictions and revised commencement dates if required. Read More

*Please note: Completion of this qualification does not guarantee you a place in ACM40418 Cert IV in Veterinary Nursing. Please read our Course Entry page for more information