Like the idea of working with animals?
There are jobs for people with all levels of qualifications.
The most important thing is that you have a genuine interest in animal welfare and can relate well to animals.
- The Animal care industry is worth £1 billion to the UK economy.
- It has 13,000 businesses, 78,000 employees and lots of volunteers.
- When talking about the animal care industry, we are generally mean; boarding kennels, catteries, pet breeders, training, grooming, animal welfare charities, zoos, wildlife parks, public services and performing animals in film and television.
Routes into this sector
There are various types of qualifications available at different levels.
- GCSEs in English, maths and science will help get you into this sector.
- At 16 you could do A Levels, which are general academic subjects or develop your knowledge and skills for this sector through an apprenticeship/traineeship or through a vocational qualification,
- At 18 or 19 you could do a higher education/degree level course, with 8 out of 10 A Level students choosing this pathway and half of all BTEC National students. However there are also other routes into your chosen career - through apprenticeships and vocational qualifications.
There are jobs in this sector which require few qualifications where you will receive training on the job through an apprenticeship or vocational course at a college, and others, such as a vet, where you have to do a degree.
Use the Course Search
Use the relevant search options on our Course Search to find college and university courses as well as vacancies for apprenticeships.
More help finding courses and training
- To find out more about the qualifications needed in this sector visit the Sector Skills Council’s website at Lantra - careers.
- To find out what A Levels do you need to be a vet.
- To find out whether there is an apprenticeship training course related to animal that might suit you.
- To search for an apprenticeship vacancy available now related to animal, across England (you need to find a vacancy to be able to apply).
- To find apprenticeship vacancies near you. There are other ways to look for an apprenticeship too.
- To find a vocational course related to animal at a college (also check the college's website to get the latest list of courses).
- To find a university level course related to animal.
Spotlight on: Animal Care Apprenticeship
You could do a level 2 Intermediate Apprenticeship in Animal care which would give you a wide range of skills to work in this sector. There are options from animal care and welfare to animal training or dog grooming.
This level is ideal if you have some knowledge and interest in working with animals but want to start on the qualification ladder, this could help you move from a junior to a more senior position. This qualification will also prepare you for progression to Level 3 qualifications.
You would complete a Level 2 Diploma in Work-based Animal Care along with English and maths.
Generally you will not need formal qualifications to start a level 2 apprenticeship but a minimum of GCSE grade 2 in English and maths is usually required. If you haven't got a GCSE at grade 4 or above you will do English and maths as part of your apprenticeship.
Progression is available via an Advanced Apprenticeship in Animal Care or other routes like an extended Diploma in Animal Management.
Most local colleges have provision for people wanting to specialise in land-based and animal care with specific courses available.