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Intermediate Apprenticeship College-Course: Level 2 Apprenticeship Animal Care and Welfare Assistant

Accredited by Lantra


Start your career in animal care and welfare. Develop the knowledge and skills to look after domestic and wild animals as a talented animal and welfare professional with our Intermediate Apprenticeship. Study a Level 2 qualification while you work.

Course highlights

  • Understand the routine day-to-day husbandry and care of domestic and/or wild animals
  • Gain the knowledge, skills and aptitude required to start your career in the animal welfare sector
  • Gain on-the-job experience and qualifications whilst employed, earning a wage

Working within the Animal Care industry can be very fulfilling, with opportunities ranging from working in kennels and catteries to working with rescue cases or exotic animals.

Designed to develop contemporary, practical skills and knowledge in animal care, this course is ideal for anyone interested in or working as an animal care and welfare assistant job role.

Skills, experience and qualifications can all make you stand out to potential employers as you progress your career, so why not consider the best of both worlds with an Animal Care Apprenticeship, to give you a mix of on- and off-the-job learning.

Key facts

An apprenticeship is a job with training, combining practical experience with vocational learning.

At least 20% of your contracted working hours will be classed as 'off-the-job'. This time will be dedicated to developing the knowledge and skills needed to meet the requirements of the apprenticeship, and therefore is not part of your usual work duties.

The apprenticeship is delivered through a day-release model, so you will be attending one day a week during term time, then will be with your employer for the remaining time. The off-the-job learning will be delivered through on-campus learning sessions and activities, one-day workshops, and practical learning experiences in your usual work setting.

The off-the-job learning for our Animal Care and Welfare Assistant Intermediate Apprenticeship is delivered through workshops at Writtle College.


Throughout your on-the-job training you will develop a portfolio to demonstrate your core knowledge, skills and behaviours and be assessed throughout your training.

You will also undertake an End Point Assessment (EPA) to complete your apprenticeship.

The EPA for this apprenticeship consists of two parts:

  1. a practical assessment
  2. professional discussion and review of your portfolio

Core modules

Examples of some of the topics you may cover (depending on pathway):

  • UK and EU Animal related legislation
  • Current legislation, policies, procedures, guidelines, Codes of Practice and ethics relevant to the workplace and the health and welfare of animals
  • The species/breeds specific to your role and common characteristics
  • Signs that indicate potential problems with animals’ health and welfare and the actions that should be taken
  • Medication types, administering medication, safe handling and disposal of medication
  • Animal first aid, urgent, ongoing and preventive care
  • Accommodation and environment requirements that are suitable and safe for animals
  • The use of different cleaning materials and equipment
  • Feeding, watering and basic nutrition and characteristics of foodstuffs
  • How to safely approach/handle/restrain/move animals
  • The behaviours of the animal, applicable to the species and how it impacts its care and welfare
  • Animal behaviour
  • Methods required to meet the animals’ need for enrichment/exercise opportunities, appropriate to species and individual animal
  • Basic anatomy and physiology
  • Basic reproduction and obstetrics and reproductive behaviour, including neutering
  • The importance of the human and animal bond
  • The changing needs of animals’ dependent on their life stage
  • Basic awareness of capture techniques
  • Hygiene, bio security procedures and infection controls when working with animals


Accredited by Lantra

Lantra work with a wide range of employers and apprenticeship training providers to provide essential levels of support and quality independent assessment of End Point Assessments (EPA) across many apprenticeships in the land-based sector.


Upon successful completion of the apprenticeship, you will have an Animal Care and Welfare Assistant Apprenticeship as well as a minimum of 12 months relevant work experience. The skills, knowledge and experience you develop during the course will open a wide range of roles in animal care and welfare.

Some typical job titles for an Animal Care and Welfare Assistant apprentice include kennel/cattery assistant, animal technician, animal welfare assistant, animal day care assistant, animal collection officer, wildlife rehabilitation assistant, pet retail assistant, animal handler, veterinary care assistant, zookeeper assistant, farm park assistant.

Alternatively, you could progress onto the Level 3 Further Education programmes.

Entry requirements

In addition to the person specifications that have been set out by your employer, these are the entry requirements for the course.

Apply now

How to apply

An apprentice needs to be in paid employment, so whilst you can apply for the apprenticeship before you find an employer, you’ll need to be employed before you can start the course.

Already employed?

If you are already employed in a suitable job role, you can apply directly by completing this application form.

To apply for an apprenticeship, you need to have the support of your employer. If you already have the support of your employer or have any questions before talking to them, please do not hesitate to contact one of our apprenticeship experts who will be happy to help.

Not employed?

Visit our Writtle Apprenticeship Vacancies page to see all our live vacancies and get tips on how to get an apprenticeship job.

For employers

If you have any questions or would like to discuss any aspect of this apprenticeship, then the Writtle College Apprenticeship Team are here to help. Get in touch today on the details above or take a look at our information for employers.

Current vacancies

Writtle Apprenticeship job vacancies

To be eligible to apply for one of our apprenticeships, you’ll first need to be in a full-time position with one of our partner employers. Browse current vacancies.

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