New Zealand Certificate in Animal Care (Level 3) (Companion Animals)
This programme is your first step towards an animal-related profession such as kennel and cattery management, pet grooming, wildlife management or education. Learn about companion animals (cats, dogs, rabbits and birds), their health, welfare and husbandry, anatomy, physiology, and low stress handling techniques.
There are some exciting changes coming to our Animal Healthcare and Veterinary Nursing programmes in 2023. Updated programme information will be added as soon as possible. To chat about the best options for you or for further information, please email email@example.com
About the programme
Start here for a fulfilling career working with animals.
This programme is your first step if you want to enter an animal-related profession such as animal control and training, kennel and cattery management, SPCA work, pet grooming, wildlife management or education.
Veterinary and animal-related industries focus on promoting the health, husbandry and welfare of animals, and practitioners work in a variety of different places such as companion animal veterinary clinics, farms, zoos, kennels, catteries, pet-shops, SPCA/animal shelters and for regional councils. The animal health industry is vital to the success of New Zealand's economy and there is a constant demand for graduates with animal-related experience.
During this programme, you will learn about companion animals (cats, dogs, rabbits and birds), their health, welfare and husbandry (how to care for companion animals), anatomy, physiology and low stress handling techniques.
By successfully completing this programme, you'll then be able to enter our New Zealand Certificate in Animal Technology (Level 5) (Veterinary Nursing Assistant).
The online delivery will ensure that you can fit your study around other commitments and learn from a location that suits you, whilst knowing that assistance is always on hand through our extensive support systems.
We know full-time study isn't always possible. We also offer a one year part-time study option. This option only starts in February.
What You Study
You'll need to complete all of these courses during this programme.
|Introduction to Animal Care||3||10|
|Assist in maintaining the Animal Facility||3||15|
|Applied animal behaviour, husbandry, handling and welfare||3||15|
|Assist with the maintenance of animal health||3||15|
We're a leader in the provision of online education. You'll learn via online facilitated teaching sessions and discussion forums, as well as having access to online course resources and activities (written, audio and video).
Help is always on hand through our extensive support systems which include one-on-one tutor support and IT support.
Health and Safety
You will be given full training to minimise all programme-specific risks. Examples of risks associated with this programme are lifting, animal bites and scratches, zoonotic diseases, computers, chemicals, sharp instruments, electricity, fire, and mercury thermometers. We recommend that your tetanus injection status is up-to-date to attend work-placements and handle any animals in this programme.
Further study options
This qualification leads directly into the New Zealand Certificate in Animal Technology (Level 5) (Veterinary Nursing Assistant) for those that do not have the academic entry requirements. To complete the Level 5 qualification, you will need to study a further one year full-time (on campus or via online learning) or two years part-time via online learning.
All study is highly-structured, guided and self-directed and you will need to have good time management skills. As a part-time student, you should typically aim for around 15 hours of study per week. A full-time student should typically aim for around 30-40 hours of study per week including work experience. You will be required to engage with the online resources and activities, and complete assessments and work placements.
Your work placements
You’ll need to complete a minimum of 40 hours of work placement time during this programme. These work placements must be sourced and managed by you.
You’ll need to organise access to animal-related facilities such as boarding kennels, catteries or regional SPCA’s (not veterinary clinics) once you have completed the first course. All work placements will ask to see a copy of your Criminal Convictions History report. This can be obtained free here.
Please note: Whilst you don't need to provide us with evidence of your Covid-19 vaccination status to study this programme, please be aware that some placement providers may ask you for this.
- There are no academic entry requirements but we prefer that you have:
- NCEA Level 1 science/biology OR equivalent
- computer skills equivalent to NCEA Level 1
- an understanding of the animal-related and veterinary industry
- observed in a veterinary clinic or animal facility
- a commitment to animal welfare.
- You must have access to a computer, camera, video and the internet.
- You must complete the enrolment pack including the health and tetanus declaration
- You must take a copy of your current Criminal Convictions History to all animal related facilities when sourcing compulsory animal related facility work placements.
Please note: This programme isn't available to international students.
Upon application you must supply certified copies of proof of identity, academic records, proof of residency (where appropriate).
Upon enrolment (once you have received an Offer of Place), you must complete the Enrolment Pack Declaration including health and tetanus status, and apply for a declaration of criminal convictions history. This can be obtained free from The Ministry of Justice.
Once we receive your application, we'll let you know within ten working whether you have been accepted. All enrolments will be contingent on Criminal Convictions History.
The tuition fees shown above are approximate only. There may be a slight fee increase per year once Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) rules and guidelines are applied. These fees also don’t include additional costs or living costs.
Student Services Fee
For most students, your tuition fee shown above includes a Student Services Fee – also known as the Student Levy. This compulsory fee covers your access to the student services we offer. This cost is tailored depending on how you're studying.
- Compulsory shirt - $40 (approx.)
- Compulsory name badge - $15 (pin-back) or $18.50 (magnetic)
- Photocopy and printing costs for personal work and assessments
- Travel, accommodation (if required) and food costs associated with attendance at animal facility work placements
- Health and Safety require closed-in shoes
- You will also need access to a digital camera and a video camera/phone that can record video footage.
Domestic full-time students can apply for a student loan through Studylink. Some support may be available for domestic part-time students. Apply at the same time as you apply for your course (you can withdraw your application anytime).
A change for 2023 enrolments
When you apply to study with Otago Polytechnic in 2023, you will be enrolled with Te Pūkenga, the new national network of vocational and applied education in Aotearoa New Zealand. You will learn in the same way, in the same place, and with the same people. The great news is that this enables us to share skills and knowledge across a network of passionate education providers, to better help you succeed. Enrolling in programmes that start in 2023, means that you will graduate with a Te Pūkenga qualification.
While every effort is made to ensure that this sheet is accurate, Otago Polytechnic reserves the right to amend, alter or withdraw any of the contained information. The fees shown in this document are indicative ONLY. Both domestic and international fees are subject to change and are dependent on the development and implementation of Government policies. Please note that additional fees may from time to time be required for external examination, NZQA fees and/or additional material fees.