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					             AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



AAWS Education and Training Stocktake
Companion Animals
Introduction to Companion Animals in Australia ........................................................................ 2
Responsible Pet Ownership ....................................................................................................................... 2
Identification – microchipping ..................................................................................................................... 2
Companion animals covered in this stocktake ........................................................................................... 3
Companion animals – Dogs........................................................................................................... 4
Welfare issues surrounding dogs ............................................................................................................... 4
Formal Education – Higher Education Sector.............................................................................. 8
Bachelor of Veterinary Science courses .................................................................................................... 8
Postgraduate Courses.............................................................................................................................. 13
Formal Education – VET Sector .................................................................................................. 16
Formal Education – Schools Sector ........................................................................................... 18
Formal Education – Government ................................................................................................ 21
Informal Education – Government .............................................................................................. 24
Informal Education – Industry ..................................................................................................... 26
Informal Education – Veterinary.................................................................................................. 30
Informal Education – Animal Interest Organisations ................................................................ 32
Informal Education – Community-based Animal Interest Organisations ................................ 41
Companion animals – Cats.......................................................................................................... 43
Responsible cat ownership ...................................................................................................................... 43
Welfare issues surrounding cats .............................................................................................................. 44
Informal Education – Government .............................................................................................. 46
Informal Education – Industry ..................................................................................................... 48
Informal Education – Animal Interest Organisations ................................................................ 50
Companion animals – Captive Birds .......................................................................................... 52
Introduction............................................................................................................................................... 52
Welfare of captive birds ............................................................................................................................ 52
Informal Education - Industry ................................................................................................................... 52
Informal Education – Animal Interest Organisations ................................................................ 54
Companion animals – Rabbits, Ferrets, Guinea Pigs................................................................ 55
Introduction............................................................................................................................................... 55
Informal Education.................................................................................................................................... 55
Companion animals – Mice and Rats ......................................................................................... 56
Introduction............................................................................................................................................... 56
Informal Education.................................................................................................................................... 56
Companion animals – Fish .......................................................................................................... 57
Appendix 1 – Animal Care and Management Training Package............................................... 58




Disclaimer: This Education and Training Stocktake has been prepared by Scarlet Consulting and CM Communications to inform
the Australian Animal Welfare Strategy (AAWS). The stocktake is a snapshot in time of the main opportunities for and
approaches taken in Australia to education and training about animal welfare in each of the six AAWS sectors. It is not a complete
and exhaustive list. It has primarily been developed through desktop research and consultation with AAWS stakeholders. The
websites accessed for information were current at the time of final reporting in January 2008. This report does not reflect the
views of AAWS or the Australian Government Department of Agriculture, Fisheries & Forestry. All care has been taken in the
preparation of this report by the consultants but they do not guarantee complete accuracy for your particular purpose and
therefore disclaim all liability for any error, loss or other consequence that may arise from you relying on it.



Prepared by Mal Brown, Scarlet Consulting and Carolyn Munckton, CM Communications                                                                           1
          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Introduction to Companion Animals in Australia
Australians love pets. We have one of the highest rates of pet ownership per household in the world. 1
Pet ownership is a fact of Australian life, with more than 63% of households having a pet. It is
estimated that more than 83% of Australians have had a pet at some time in their lives and that
companion animals are worth $4.62 billion 2 annually to the Australian economy.

Local governments across Australia have the primary responsibility for enforcing legislation relating to
the management of companion animals. Each Australian state has legislation relating to companion
animals – specifically dog and cat management (although WA has no cat management legislation and
Dog Act is not linked to the Animal Welfare Act in that state). The management-based legislation varies
widely, particularly in relation to whether cats are covered. Legislation does not go beyond dogs and
cats. (See the Review of Existing Animal Welfare Arrangements for the Companion Animals Working
Group by Harlock Jackson (2006) for definitions of companion animals and details about existing state
and territory animal management and animal welfare legislation, regulations and codes of practice).

Responsible Pet Ownership
The term responsible pet ownership has widespread application in the companion animals sector, although
it relates mostly to dogs and cats. It primarily addresses the care and welfare of animals and their impacts
on the community and the environment – eg nuisance barking and cleaning up after dogs. 3

Pet owners need to attend to their pet’s care and welfare and comply with welfare and management
legislation and regulations. However, pet owners are not a homogenous group and not easily
contactable, and therefore are difficult to target and communicate with or educate. 4

Commercial owners of pet stores, boarding kennels and grooming services are other relevant groups
when addressing the welfare of companion animals and encouraging responsible pet ownership.

Identification – microchipping
Identification of dogs and cats is an integral part of responsible pet ownership and is a foundation for
the appropriate care and welfare of animals.

A number of states now have legislation requiring microchipping identification of dogs prior to
registration.

Microchipping improves the chance of a dog or cat being returned to its owner if it is lost. The
microchip is a small chip the size of a grain of rice that is inserted under the skin on the back of the
cat's neck. When purchasing a dog the owner fills in their contact details on a form and these details
are then put into a database against the dog’s microchip number. Currently however, there is not one
national microchip or database.

There are microchipping implanters courses available in states where microchipping of pets is a
requirement. (For example, in NSW, the Animal Welfare League facilitates the Microchip Implanters
Accreditation Course. The course is available to everyone. Participants in the course are required to
undertake a practical component of the course under the supervision of a qualified veterinary surgeon.
Upon successful graduation, the participants will receive accreditation.)




1
    Australian Companion Animal Council (ACAC), website: www.acac.org.au
2
  Contribution of the Australian Pet Care Industry to the Australian Economy, 2006, BIS Shrapnel
3
  Review of Existing Animal Welfare Arrangements for the Companion Animals Working Group,
Harlock Jackson, July 2006
4
  Ibid.


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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Companion animals covered in this stocktake
Education and training for companion animals covered in this stocktake covers:
•     Dogs
•     Cats, and
•     Captive Birds
•     Rabbits, Ferrets, Guinea Pigs
•     Mice and Rats

The vast majority of education is focussed on dogs and cats, although this stocktake report has
identified some limited information about other species.

Horses are covered in the AAWS Work, Sport and Recreation sector Education and Training Stocktake.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Companion animals – Dogs
Dogs hold a special place in the hearts of many Australians and are an integral part of many
households. For the purpose of this stocktake of education and training, companion animal dogs cover:
•     Pets and breeding dogs.

Working farm dogs, guide dogs and dogs used in police and customs work etc are covered in the AAWS
Work, Sport and Recreation sector.

Welfare issues surrounding dogs

Health and Care
Dogs   need the following:
•       A warm comfortable sleeping place, preferably a basket or a kennel with a blanket.
•       Plenty of human contact.
•       Regular vaccinations, worming and flea control.
•       Registration with the local council at 3 months of age to give it an identity disc or microchip
•       A balanced, healthy diet at regular times each day.
•       Regular grooming, particularly for longhaired dogs.
•       A secure property in which to live – so that they cannot wander.
•       Mental and physical exercise.

Obedience classes are also beneficial for dogs and are a vital part of owning and caring for a dog.
Having a dog that will respond to commands is particularly important in an urban environment.

Overpopulation
The saying goes “a puppy is not just for Christmas” and there is much truth in this. Unfortunately it is true
that cute puppies can grow up to become unwanted, dumped or neglected dogs. Dogs are a responsibility
all year round and for the life of the animal or the duration of ownership. Some times people choose the
wrong type of dog for their type of home, lifestyle and family circumstances.

A major reason for overpopulation is owners not getting dogs desexed. Desexing is promoted as one of the
important first steps in responsible dog ownership.

National Desexing Network
www.ndn.org.au

The National Desexing Network (NDN) is a nationwide referral system for discounted desexing made
available to pet owners in financial need. Its goal is to end pet overpopulation by making this service
more affordable to those who might not otherwise be in a position to desex their pets.

Hundreds of thousands of healthy cats and dogs are euthanased each year in pounds and shelters
nationwide. Due to the ongoing problem of pet overpopulation, these healthy animals are killed because
there are not enough homes available.

NDN commenced in 2005 and has a nationwide network of more than 120 participating veterinary
clinics. NDN organises National Desexing Month in August each year. During this month, welfare
organisations, veterinarians, pounds and councils are encouraged to raise awareness about pet
overpopulation and promote desexing as a humane method of solving it.

Desexing is a substantially discounted service in veterinary practices. Overpopulation of pets is not a
problem in all areas of Australia.

It should be noted that there are a number of other reasons for pet abandonment and euthanasia in
shelters, such as health problems (including old age) and behaviour problems being the most prevalent.



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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Overview of relevant current and potential training and education activities

Issue             Training/          Details               Limitations             Opportunities             Potential
                  Education                                                                                  impact on AW
                  Resources                                                                                  outcomes
Responsible       Victorian DPI      Trained teachers      Mainly dog focus        Modify program            Potential high
Pet               Responsible Pet    visit Primary                                 every 2 yrs or so to      level of impact –
Ownership         Ownership          schools including                             incorporate different     assessment
                  Program            dog bite                                      info eg cat               done mainly on
                                     prevention                                    ownership etc             dog bites rather
                                                                                                             than welfare

                  PetPEP –           Teacher manual        Insufficient            With more                 High level
                  Australian         for primary           resources to achieve    resources, PetPEP         impact – 2
                  Veterinary         schools & links       distribution & uptake   could achieve             evaluations
                  Association        vets with schools                             greater uptake            showed positive
                                                                                   especially if available   attitude
                                                                                   to trainee teachers       response by
                                                                                                             children

                  Spot (Safe Pets    Volunteers visit      Relies on volunteers    Could incorporate         Potential high
                  Out There)         primary schools:                              diff messages in the      level impact
                  Program, NSW       focus on being                                future                    although mainly
                  Dept Local Govt    dog safe, welfare                                                       on dog bite
                                     & care                                                                  prevention

                  Delta Dog Safe     Volunteers visit      Focus on dog bites      Could incorporate         Potential
                  Program            schools to talk on                            diff messages in the      moderate level
                                     being safe with                               future                    impact although
                                     dogs                                                                    mainly on dog
                                                                                                             bite prevention


                  AW League SA       Limited               Limited information     Limited information       Limited
                                     information                                                             information
Overpopulation    Victorian DPI      As above              As above                As above                  As above
                  Responsible Pet
                  Ownership
                  Program

                  PetPEP – Aust
                  Vet Association

                  Spot (Safe Pets
                  Out There)
                  Program, NSW
                  Dept Local Govt
Health & Care     VET Certificates   Certificate courses   Appears to be very      Adapt units to            High level
                  in Animal Care &   for various sectors   comprehensive but       incorporate other         impact
                  Management         including vet         pet shop, boarding      key sectors including
                  Training           nursing, an control   & breeding premise      pet shops, boarding
                  Package            etc                   personnel not           & breeding premises
                                                           mentioned               to achieve specific
                                                                                   recognition

New               Welfare code for   Currently,            Inconsistency in        Potential for greater     Moderate level
opportunities     cats, dogs etc     information within    companion animal        consistency & focus       impact but
                                     Dog Act, Welfare      area                    on welfare rather         depends on
                                     Code for Caged                                than animal control       promotion
                                     Birds but no Cat                              focus
                                     Act
Rural &           Animal             Dog Health            Appears to be very      No doubt greater          High level
Remote            Management in      Program including     effective               resources could           impact with
Communities       Rural & Remote     Veterinary Guide                              achieve more              additional
                  Indigenous                                                                                 resources
                  Communities
                  (AMRRIC)




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities (AMRRIC)
www.amrric.org

Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities (AMRRIC) is an independent group
of veterinarians, academics, health workers and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who work
to facilitate sustainable dog prograes in remote Indigenous communities to improve the health and
wellbeing of the entire community.

In addition to servicing immediate needs, AMRRIC also works on the ‘bigger picture’. This involves
creating effective partnerships with and between the many different stakeholders, promoting and
supporting research in the area and creating forums for honest and constructive dialogue. The aim is to
build awareness, understanding and a resource set that will make sustainable, affordable dog
management available right across Australia.

AMRRIC engages with the culture and traditional ways of individual Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
communities. Western medicine is effectively delivered in a manner that is aligned with the expectations
and traditions of the local people and which is agreed upon by the elders. Essentially, AMRRIC holds
that human health and dog health are intrinsically interwoven in these remote indigenous communities.
It believes that addressing human health whilst ignoring the dogs is strategically flawed. Conversely,
AMRRIC believes that addressing dog health has tangible, immediate and ongoing benefit for the health
and well being of the entire community.

Conducting Dog Health Programs in Indigenous Communities: A Veterinary Guide
Conducting Dog Health Programs in Indigenous Communities: A Veterinary Guide, is a tool for
individuals and organisations seeking to establish sustainable and culturally appropriate animal health
programs in Indigenous communities.

The Manual is not just for veterinarians. It has hands-on, practical information within the context of
relevant historical detail, it is an essential resource for local government, community organisations,
environmental health workers, and others interested in the health and wellbeing of animals, their
owners and their communities.

‘What Dogs mean to Aboriginal People’ DVD and Education DVD
AMRRIC has a DVD called ‘What Dogs mean to Aboriginal People and an Education DVD covering caring
for your pets, parasite control, using bush medicines to care for pets, feeding and care, etc. The DVD is
being distributed to aboriginal communities schools, vet clinics and has been well received.

Marvin Software
www.marvin.com.au

AMRRIC is investigating the possibility of using the Marvin software to develop an education program
on pet care and pet welfare for Indigenous communities. Marvin is a highly culturally appropriate and
effective communication tool. Developed by the Northern Territory Government to deliver sensitive
messages to Indigenous people it takes an interactive approach that sees young people interact
with elders and men work together with women to interpret, communicate and exchange
information.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Dog People
www.dogpeople.com.au

In Darwin in 2006, AMRRIC staged ‘Dog People’, an international conference on animal management in
remote Indigenous communities. The conference raised profile, encouraged greater participation,
reinforced or established best practices, built the body of research and created networks that will
contribute to great advancements in the future.

In tribal groupings across Australia, individuals are traditionally designated stewards of distinct aspects
of tribal life. Dog People are those that tend the lore, management and health of the dog in the
community.

The ‘Dog People’ conference set new standards in international practice. It consolidated the work being
done across the world and will prove instrumental in setting future directions for companion animal care
in remote, first nation communities.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Formal Education – Higher Education Sector

Bachelor of Veterinary Science courses
From 2008, there will be seven universities across Australia offering a Bachelor of Veterinary Science
(University of Melbourne, University of Sydney, Murdoch University, Charles Sturt University, James
Cook University, University of Queensland and University of Adelaide).

Today's Veterinary Science degree courses have a strong focus on animal welfare and the graduates
from these courses are well equipped to show leadership in animal welfare matters.

University of Melbourne BVSc course
www.unimelb.edu.au

The University of Melbourne, Faculty of Veterinary Science has had a very close relationship with RSPCA
Victoria since the Bachelor of Veterinary Science (BVSc) course was re-established in 1963. Since 1964,
the RSPCA Burwood Shelter has provided extramural work experience for students in return for animal
ambulance driving, and ferrying rescued animals to participating veterinarians for treatment,
euthanasia, etc.

The introduction of a new BVSc curriculum at Melbourne in 1998 provided the opportunity to change the
way animal welfare was taught starting from Semester 1 of the BVSc course. There have been six years
of graduates (2001–2007) from this curriculum, and outcome assessments indicate that graduates are
now better prepared to deal with animal welfare problems, and more informed and able to debate
contemporary animal welfare issues, than graduates from the previous curriculum (1990–1997).

Note: Vet Science will become a graduate program requiring a 3-year undergraduate science degree
under the New Melbourne Model.

Course content
The Melbourne BVSc curriculum is arranged within several frameworks. Key among these is the animal
framework. The central focus in this framework is the management of animal health, welfare and
disease. The work covers subjects that lead to the understanding of the normal and abnormal animal,
how disease is produced, and how animals and their welfare are managed in the agricultural and
companion animal industries worldwide.

First Year BVSc - Veterinary Professional Studies
Introduction to laws, ethics and morals, organisation of the veterinary profession and the management
of animals in society. Learning is achieved through students working in syndicate groups, and
presenting oral and written presentations. [Comparing and contrasting cultures and countries provide
students with an international perspective for the rest of the curriculum].

Animal Health, Management and Welfare 1A and 1B
Dr Hugh Wirth has given lectures in this course. Practical classes are undertaken at the animal welfare
shelters - dealing with shelter management, biosecurity, aggression tests, euthanasia of unsuitable
animals, preparing suitable animals for adoption, educating the new owners.

Second Year BVSc - Animal Health, Management and Welfare 2A and 2 B
Lectures on the codes of practice and the performance of the industries in responding to issues raised
by animal welfare/rights/liberation groups. By the end of second year students will have completed two
weeks of compulsory extramural work in an animal welfare shelter and submitted a report. Some
students have worked in shelters in India, Texas, Hong Kong, China, Singapore and the UK.

Third Year BVSc - Professional Practice 1
Students can undertake up to four weeks of the required 12 weeks of extramural work with veterinary
practices associated with animal shelters.


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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Fourth Year and final year BVSc - Professional Practice 2
Lectures on Legislation, guidelines and codes.

Professional Practice 3 – Lecture-free electives
Three-week elective as a trainee veterinarian in a clinic associated with an animal welfare shelter.
[RSPCA, Lort Smith Animal Hospital, Lost Dogs Home, Cat Protection Society]

The operations of the animal welfare shelters in Melbourne have changed since the students
commenced the compulsory extramural work from 1998. In 2006 there were more veterinarians
working in these organisations than in 1998, and the standard of veterinary care has improved.

One reason for changing the curriculum and involving all veterinary students with the animal welfare
societies from the start of the BVSc course was to improve the relationship between the veterinary
profession and these societies in Victoria.

University of Sydney Faculty of Veterinary Science
www.unisyd.edu.au

Veterinary Science at the University of Sydney is a five-year course that has a strong emphasis on
animal handling skills, and includes teaching programs in a wide range of animal industries. Students
spend 12 weeks on horse, pig, beef and dairy cattle, sheep, and poultry farms. These experiences
develop competency in animal management. Classes in dog and cat handling are also included in the
course. There is also a strong commitment to provision of opportunities for students to spend time in
veterinary practices and these extramural links with practising veterinary surgeons are an important
component of the BVSc program.

At the Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Sydney, Associate Professor Paul McGreevy teaches a
unit of study titled 'Animal Behaviour and Welfare Science 3' (Course code ANSC 3106). Animal
Behaviour and Animal Welfare Science is the study of normal and abnormal behaviours in domestic and
captive species. This is one of the core knowledge areas for veterinarians because it facilitates the
recognition of disease states and helps veterinarians to make informed comment on animal welfare
issues. The Unit of Study draws on knowledge of many aspects of animal husbandry, evolutionary
biology and physiology, pharmacology and psychology. The course focuses on the importance of
understanding learning theory and trainers' techniques and includes demonstrations from expert animal
handlers and trainers.

The unit builds on the understanding of animal form and operation students have developed in prior
units. In Animal Behaviour and Welfare Science the behavioural and physiological responses of animals
to stressors related to husbandry, housing, training and performance are explored in some detail. This
Unit enables students to develop a three-dimensional appreciation of the species differences in
response to common management interventions that arise in the context of domestication. The
principles of animal responses to distress are illustrated with production species as the main examples.

Bachelor of Veterinary Science (BVSc)
5 yrs
First two years give sound grounding in basic biomedical sciences. Fourth year includes Bird Health &
Production unit. Incorporates lecture-free year as ‘intern’ in university and commercial partner practices.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Murdoch University School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences
www.murdoch.edu.au

At Murdoch University's School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences animal welfare is initially
presented as a discrete unit in first year. Subsequent to this, animal welfare is reinforced informally
through various units in the remaining four years. As from 2008, a new veterinary program has been
approved, with a general science year followed by a new five year vet curricula. Murdoch also has a
post-graduate foundation in veterinary science.

VET 106 Animal and Human Bioethics
This is a core first year unit for veterinary students and is taken as an elective by other biomedical or
biological science students. A variety of lecturers are given from both Murdoch staff and others off
campus, for example, RSPCA, Perth Zoo and DAFWA. Tutorials include activities such as a formal
debate and role playing as Animal Ethics Committee.

Topics covered by this unit include welfare assessment [five freedoms, physiological responses and
behaviour], agriculture and animal production systems, public interest groups [RSPCA, animal rights
groups, DAFWA culling programs], animals in society and companion animals [human-animal bond],
conservation and wildlife [wild animal management] euthanasia and ethics at the end of life [religious
slaughter], animal experimentation, animal use and education and ethical decision making in a vet clinic
or laboratory).

Non discrete units involving animal welfare themes
Continual reinforcement of animal welfare themes is continued in various units in the latter years. For
example: VET246 Animals and Society and VET401 Applied Veterinary Medicine.

The curricula proposed for 2008 includes:
- ANS106 Animal and Human Bioethics - retained structure as VET106 above – still a core unit
   for veterinary students
- VET 242 Animal Systems I - includes analysis of animal welfare in animal production systems
   (intensive and extensive systems)
- VET 342 Animal Systems II - includes more detailed animal welfare topics concerning both
   companion animals and farm animals. Animal welfare topics will constitute approximately 10
   lectures. Topics such as human animal bond, welfare aspects of breeding and showing,
   implications of neutering programs, responsible pet ownership, and the relationship between animal
   abuse and human abuse. Farm animal topics will include welfare assessment on farms, principal
   welfare issues like husbandry procedures, mutilations, and transport and welfare effects of
   stockmanship
- VET 442 Animal Systems III - will include welfare aspects of slaughter, disease control and
   epidemiology
- Veterinary Medicine and Surgery I and II - earlier themes of animal welfare will be expanded
   as students focus on the prevention and treatment of disease in clinical setting.

Murdoch University, Human and Animal Bioethics unit
This unit offers students the opportunity to investigate the scientific and ethical justifications for using
animals in agriculture research, education, recreation and as companions. It also covers the key
aspects of the reproductive technologies and genetic engineering for both humans and animals. Other
topics include the role of animals in society, euthanasia, and our responsibilities in the management of
wildlife and in the advancement of genetic technologies. Students may direct their studies to the
animal, human or biotechnological areas.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Charles Sturt University
www.csu.edu.au/faculty/science/savs/vet/index.htm

Bachelor of Veterinary Science
6 yrs
The Veterinary Science course at Charles Sturt University's Wagga Wagga campus commenced in 2005,
with the enrolment of the first 45 students.

Veterinary Science at CSU arose from the need for more veterinarians who want to live and work in
regional Australia and who have the knowledge and skills to work with a broad range of animal species
from farm livestock to horses, companion animals and wildlife.

James Cook University
www.jcu.edu.au

Bachelor of Veterinary Science
5 yrs
Since 2006, James Cooks University’s School of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences has offered the
Bachelor of Veterinary Science. Students acquire the knowledge and skills to diagnose, treat and
prevent disease in a wide range of animals, including farm animals. In addition, students will acquire a
thorough knowledge of animal production systems. Final year of the course is devoted to clinical and
professional training and is delivered in a series of clinical rotations through veterinary hospitals,
practices, laboratories and government agencies in Mackay, Townsville, Cairns, Charters Towers and
Malanda.

Griffith University
www.gu.edu.au

Bachelor of Veterinary Science
6 yrs
Particularly geared towards working in the farm animal industries, this degree providing a solid
grounding in agricultural production systems and the integration of nutrition, genetics, economics and
epidemiology into the management of herds and flocks. The course recognises the role of vets in
ensuring the safety of animal products for human consumption and the welfare of animals in livestock
production systems.

University of Queensland
www.uq.edu.au

Bachelor of Veterinary Science
5 years
This program is concerned with the promotion of the health and welfare of vertebrate animals of special
importance to society. This involves the care of healthy and sick animals and the prevention,
recognition, control and treatment of their diseases, and the welfare and productivity of livestock. First
year courses provide a foundation knowledge of animal structure and function, chemical principles, and
animal husbandry. The structure and function of the normal animal, and its nutrition, breeding, and
management, are studied in greater depth in second and third years. Fourth and fifth year students
develop knowledge and skills in the prevention, diagnoses, treatment and control of diseases in
domestic animals and birds. All years of the program contain a large component of practical work.

First year subject - Animal Handling, Behaviour and Welfare for Veterinary Students




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University of Queensland Centre for Animal Welfare and Ethics (CAWE)
www.uq.edu.au/cawe

The Centre for Animal Welfare and Ethics (CAWE) aims to improve understanding of animal welfare,
and ethical issues concerned with animal welfare, through research, teaching, legislation and training.

Animal Welfare is increasingly attracting attention worldwide. It is becoming increasingly recognized
that housing an animal in an environment designed to maximize its sense of ‘well being’ is integral to
the physical health, psychological health and reproductive capability of animals kept for many purposes
including conservation, companionship and research. Due to this growing recognition of the importance
of animal welfare, The Centre for Animal Welfare and Ethics (CAWE) was established at UQ and consists
of a team whose purpose is to develop innovative practices, guidelines and management strategies to
protect animals, enhance their health and ensure that the five standard freedoms of animal welfare are
met.

The CAWE, in conjunction with the School of Veterinary Science, is presently aiming to increase welfare
for animals kept for companionship, those used in both intensive and extensive animal industries, the
CAWE is also involved in suggesting refinement techniques for handling livestock and are working to
increase the welfare of animals housed for conservational purposes and research.

Veterinary Education and Information Network (VEIN)
http://vein.library.usyd.edu.au/links/animalwelfare.html

The teaching of animal welfare and animal welfare science is further supported by the University of
Sydney Veterinary Education and Information Network (VEIN), which was launched in 2001. VEIN
features pages devoted to animal welfare, alternatives and ethics with links to sites dealing with:
- Animal welfare information gateways
- General resources
- Guidelines and issues
- Organisations and government bodies
- Alternatives to animal use in teaching and research
- Environmental enrichment
- Production animal welfare
- Laboratory animal welfare
- Resources to reduce or replace animal use in teaching and research
- Animal rights
- Animal welfare essays.

In addition it has numerous pages devoted to a complete range of veterinary interests which would
have partial interests in both animal welfare and animal welfare science including:
- Pain
- General resources
- Laboratory animals
- Non-laboratory animals
- Human resources
- Organisations
- Recommended research databases and indexes.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Postgraduate Courses

University of Melbourne, Faculty of Land and Food Resources
www.landfood.unimelb.edu.au

The Animal Welfare Science Centre, within the Faculty of Land and Food Resources, offers a Masters of
Animal Welfare (Research) and PhD programs in Animal Behaviour and Welfare. In addition, from 2009,
the Centre will teach core subjects for the Postgraduate Diploma in Animal Welfare and the Masters in
Animal Welfare by Coursework, at the University of Melbourne.

Graduate Certificate in Animal Welfare (Monash University)
www.animalwelfare.net.au

The Department of Psychology at Monash University offers the Graduate certificate in Animal Welfare
(GAW) as a fourth year certificate. The course is taught in the off-campus learning mode and students
are required to attend a one-day on-campus workshop per unit. The GAW offers professionals the
opportunity to further their education and personal development in the area of animal welfare.
The course aims to provide valuable and relevant training in animal welfare issues for people working in
areas of animal husbandry, animal training and veterinary care, and to provide graduates with
knowledge and skills necessary to manage the ethical, biological, behavioural and human challenges
relevant to animal welfare issues. The GAW is currently being reviewed.

Post-Graduate Foundation in Veterinary Science, University of Sydney
www.pgf.edu.au

The Post-Graduate Foundation in Veterinary Science of the University of Sydney formed in 1965. It was
established to fund continuing education for the profession and over time the activities have been
expanded to cover a range of different services. The Foundation's initiatives include regular refresher
courses (2 to 5 days duration), along with publishing, technical information search and dissemination,
and distance education.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Animal Welfare Science Centre
www.animalwelfare.net.au

The Animal Welfare Science Centre is a partnership between the University of Melbourne, Monash
University and the Department of Primary Industries (Victoria). The Centre was established to focus and
coordinate research and academic resources of the three collaborating organisations, providing the
animal industries, animal users, farming communities, Government and the academic and general
community with an internationally competitive research, training and teaching resource in animal
welfare science.

Some of the AWSC’s research and education work is related to companion animal dogs. Of particular
relevance is:

Program 2: Housing and husbandry effects on animal welfare
Confinement of animals and painful husbandry procedures are controversial issues for many in the
general community and the Centre has a number of research projects studying some of these most
controversial issues for farm and companion animals. One current program is evaluation of enrichment
and handling programs for dogs in kennels and shelters.

Program 3: Attitudes to animals and animal welfare, and farmer, consumer and community
behaviour
Human behaviour significantly impacts domestic animals both directly and indirectly. The Centre is
conducting research on the relationships between public and consumer attitudes and a range of
community and consumer behaviours. Reliable and valid measures for monitoring public and consumer
attitudes to animal welfare are required to assist in establishing research, education and regulatory
policy in animal welfare.

Current research projects (2007) include:
- Behavioural and physiological measures to identify fundamental animal welfare requirements
- Physical and social requirements of animals
- The effect of human-animal interactions on the welfare of animals
- Teaching and training programs for industry and animal carers.

Current AWSC Student (2007) projects:
- An investigation of factors affecting the success of canine adoptions from animal welfare shelters
- The Effect of Morphology on Communication in the Dog (Canis familiaris)
- Behavioural and physiological effects of introducing a structured enrichment program into a
   kennelled population of domestic dogs
- Best way to measure personality in dogs using the Five Factor Model of Personality in People as a
   model
- Behavioural assessment of adult companion dogs: Development of national standards for identifying
   behaviourally sound canidae
- A study of owner factors influencing dog obesity.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



University of Sydney, Faculty of Veterinary Science - Companion Animal Research
www.vetsci.usyd.edu.au/research/companion.shtml

Research strengths in the Faculty include production animal research (especially pigs, poultry, cattle
and sheep), companion animal medicine and behaviour, wildlife conservation biology and performance
research in horses. The state-of-the-art Valentine Charlton Centre has attracted several new specialist
appointments which have enhanced the Centre's research capability. New academics in paraclinical
areas have further raised the research focus in companion animals, including in animal behaviour.


University of Queensland Centre for Companion Animal Health
www.uq.edu.au/ccah/

The Centre for Companion Animal Health (CCAH) is a world-class research centre, leading the
development of scientific and social advances in companion animal health and welfare. Founded in
2002, the Centre operates as a non-profit organisation. Under the leadership of Professor Jacquie
Rand, a team of postgraduate students conducts studies to:
- Improve the health of companion animals through a better understanding of the cause of disease.
   Best possible treatments and preventions are developed and disseminated world-wide for the
   benefit of all pets.
- Enrich the lives of aged, disadvantaged and disabled people by understanding and promoting the
   many benefits within a human-animal bond.
- Prevent unwanted and problem pets through improved socialisation, re-training, re-homing,
   neutering and broad community education.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Formal Education – VET Sector

Agri-Food Industry Skills Council
www.agrifoodskills.net.au

The Agri-Food Industry Skills Council (AFISC) was formed in May 2004 as one of 10 industry skills
councils established to represent enterprises and workers across the spectrum of Australian industries.
The council is funded through DEST but is established as a private company reporting to a governing
Board of Directors. The 14 directors reflect the interests of Australia's five major agri-food industry
sectors, one of which is the 'Rural and Related Industries' Sector. This sector includes animal care and
management, which covers most of the training associated with companion animals.

The AFISC operates collaboratively with the agri-food industry, including its thousands of enterprises,
the unions, industry peak bodies, professional associations and advisory groups at national, state and
territory levels. The council acts in collaboration with other industry skills councils, training providers
and brokers, companies and producers as well as all three tiers of government.

AFISC’s aim is to provide accurate industry intelligence to the vocational education and training sector
about current and future skill needs and training requirements of its industries. AFISC supports the
development, implementation and continuous improvement of quality nationally recognised training
products and services, including Training Packages. AFISC is integrating a lot of animal welfare into its
training packages.

Registered Training Organisations
The Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) courses and competencies can be found on the National
Training Information Service website (www.ntis.gov.au).

Review of Animal Care and Management Training Package
In 2006 the Agri-Food Industry Skills Council managed the review of the Animal Care and Management
Training Package (RUV04). The Animal Care and Management Training Package is the national
benchmark for skills development in the animal care industry sectors and comprise the nationally-
endorsed qualifications for these sectors.

Key industry sectors included in RUV04 are: Animal Control and Regulation, Animal Technology, Captive
Animals, Companion Animal Services, Veterinary Nursing.

The AAWS was identified as a key emergent concern during Phase 1 of the review. More emphasis is
required in RUV04 to address legislation and National Animal Welfare Strategy requirements.

Award Courses
Studies within the Animal Care and Management Training Package can lead to the attainment of
qualifications that include:
Certificate I, II in Animal Studies
Certificate III in Animal Technology
Certificate III and IV in Captive Animals
Certificate III and IV in Companion Animal Services
Certificate IV in Animal Control and Regulation
Diploma of Animal Technology
Diploma of Veterinary Nursing (Surgical, Dental or Emergency and Critical Care)




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



National Centre for Vocational Education Research Ltd
www.ncver.edu.au

The National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) is a not-for-profit company owned by
the federal, state and territory ministers responsible for training. It is responsible for collecting,
managing, analysing, evaluating and communicating research and statistics about vocational education
and training (VET). A board of eight directors, who represent state, territory, and federal governments,
industry, unions, and training authorities, manage NCVER.

NCVER holds a wide range of current information on RTOs, VET courses (duration of course etc),
student demographics, and Australian Quality Training Framework (AQTF) outcomes (passing, failing,
withdrawing). NCVER provided data for the AFSIC-led Phase 1 Review of the RUV04 Training Package
and can provide additional answers (on a fee-for-service basis) to questions such as:
• How many RTOs provide Certificate I, II, III, IV, Diploma and/or Advanced Diploma that cover
    animal care and/or management?
• How many modules* are taught in the Australian VET sector include competencies that cover
    animal care and/or management?
• How many students have enrolled in courses or modules that cover animal care or management?

*Note: The Department of Education, Science and Training (DEST) advises that there is now a strong
take-up of modules and competencies for a particular occupation as distinct from the study of all
competencies in a particular training package. There is an increasing trend towards the take-up of
individual competencies and groups of competencies (skill sets) as distinct from the study of all units in
a particular qualification.

Thomson Education Direct
Animal Care Course
www.thomsoneducationdirect.com.au/index.cfm?id=141

The Thomson Education Direct Animal Care course delivers training from the RUV04 Animal Care and
Management Training Package. The course gives students essential skills in day-to-day care, health and
first aid. Students learn to understand domestic animal behaviours, characteristics, obedience,
breeding and grooming.

The course emphasises practical experience, helping position for future careers opportunities in a
variety of environments – pet shops, animal shelters, kennels and veterinary clinics. Upon successful
completion of the following competencies:
•      RUV2105A Participate in workplace communications
•      RUV2601A Carry out veterinary reception duties
•      RTC2704A Provide basic first aid
Students receive a nationally recognised Statement of Attainment.




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            AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Formal Education – Schools Sector
Victorian Responsible Pet Ownership Program
www.pets.info.vic.gov.au

The Victorian State Government collects (via local government councils) a portion of the dog and cat
registrations fees and that revenue funds the Victorian Responsible Pet Ownership Program run by the
Department of Primary Industries’ Bureau of Animal Welfare. The Program includes schools and
community education and is equally strong in regional Victoria as it is in the metropolitan area.

The Responsible Pet Ownership (RPO) Schools Education Program was launched in 2000 in the primary
schools and 2003 in the preschools. It has educated over one million children and 130,000 preschool
parents. 70 trained sessional Pet Educators visit 1100 schools and 1300 preschools annually with their
temperament tested pets.

The Preschool Program was introduced in response to the evidence that four to five year olds are most
vulnerable to dog attack. This Program focuses solely on living safely with dogs and provides sessions
for both children and their parents. The visit is supported by a comprehensive curriculum package
designed to allow teachers to revisit the key safety messages on a regular basis through activities
designed to fit in with their daily routines. In response to interest from outside agencies, a stand alone
preschool package, using a highly engaging DVD, is now available.

The Primary School Program, focussing predominantly on cats and dogs, conducts age appropriate
sessions for students from Prep to Year 6, covering topics of: choosing the right pet, registration and
identification, housing and confinement. Living safely with dogs is always a key component through all
levels. The sessions are supported by a comprehensive curriculum package, a website and a range of
multimedia resources. Teacher Evaluations showed that 70% who participated in the session used the
curriculum package 5

Antenatal Program
A new antenatal program is being trialled in Victorian Hospitals and is due to be launched early in 2008.
The 0-4 yrs age group is most at risk to hospitalisation due to dog attack.

This Program is focussed on providing expectant parents with knowledge and strategies to help ensure
their new arrivals and pets live together safely. With 92% of new parents attending antenatal programs
this is an ideal medium for educating this high risk group. A short multimedia presentation which can
be used by midwives or form part of a more extensive presentation by a Pet educator will be supported
by a comprehensive information booklet a comprehensive information booklet and a website.

All educators involved in the RPO Schools program undergo an ongoing professional development
program which involves a four tiered performance based advancement system based on formal and self
assessments and two professional development days annually to ensure the consistency of the message.
The welfare of the pets remains paramount with strict protocols and Standard Operating Procedures.

Evaluation of the program
Monash University has undertaken two independent assessments of the Responsible Pet Ownership
Schools Education Program. These assessments have found that children understood and retained
messages and subsequently improved their knowledge about pets and influenced their behaviour
around dogs. The RPO Program has been modified and improved in response to the evaluations.
The Monash University Accident Research Centre has reviewed hospital admission data and identified a
significant decline in number of 0-4 years olds hospitalized for dog bit injury over the five-year period
from July 1998 to June 2004. There has also been a reduction in admission rates for 5-9 year old
children in the same period. Market research has also been undertaken and shows a shift in public
attitude towards issues such as dog control.

5
    Bureau of Animal Welfare, Department of Primary Industries Victoria, 2007.


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PetPEP
www.ava.com.au/petpep

The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) has developed PetPEP (Pets and People Education
Program) – an education program aimed at primary school students. It is accredited by Education
Queensland and endorsed by RSPCA Queensland. PetPEP brings together teachers, school children,
vets, vet nurses, councils and the RSPCA to help children learn important lessons about responsible pet
ownership.

PetPEP links vet practices with schools. Vets and vet nurses visit schools to give presentations. Local
government councils can also be involved with the PetPEP program and can provide presentations
about local laws governing owning a pet in that particular community/municipality.

There is a Teachers’ Resource Book and CD-ROM (written by teachers and vets) which contains
worksheets, activities, black line masters and industry contacts.

PetPEP was first established in WA in 1991 and is now nationwide, although it is much stronger and
active in some states – namely Queensland.

Evaluation of the program
It is the longest running responsible pet ownership education program in Australia. It has been
evaluated twice – in 1996 and 2002. AVA NSW supports PetPEP, but is also a founding partner and
funder of the SPOT Program.

The 2002 evaluation of the Program revealed:
1) Although the measured knowledge gains did not indicate a significant difference between
   participants and the control group, the behavioural outcomes as related by the parents and the
   teachers showed that the program had a positive impact on the students and that they enjoyed
   participating in the program.
2) There was interest by other schools not involved in the program. Perhaps the low awareness of the
   program was one reason why other schools are not taking it up.
3) Vets from smaller practices found it difficult to resource the program.
4) The most effective parts of the program were identified as 'the hands on' elements, the Pet expos
   and the vet visits.


Delta Society
www.deltasocietyaustralia.com.au

Delta Society Australia promotes and facilitates positive interaction between people and animals.
It is a national non-profit organisation and has three core projects, the schools program is described
below and the general community education programs are listed in the Informal Education section.

1.   The Delta Dog Safe™ program teaches positive, proactive ways to reduce the incidence of dog
     bites in children. The program is conducted statewide in South Australia and Tasmania and funded
     by the state governments in those states. Coordinators in the program recruit volunteers who are
     trained by behaviourists to present ‘dog friendly’ school and parent education programs. The
     program teaches pre-school and junior primary school children (and their parents) about safe and
     sensible behaviour around dogs, including how to read dogs’ body language. Delta Dog Safe™ is
     currently run in Tasmania and South Australia.

Delta Society is also a founding partner and funder of the SPOT Program in NSW – see below.

Some of the key messages about safety around dogs differ from the Victorian DPI Responsible Pet
Ownership Program.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



SPOT Program
www.spot.nsw.gov.au

The SPOT (Safe Pets Out There) Program has been developed under the umbrella of the Australian
Companion Animal Council by the Animal Welfare League NSW (AWL), the Australian Veterinary
Association (AVA), Delta Society Australia and the RSPCA.

The NSW Department of Local Government has funded the SPOT Program for three years. (In contrast,
in Victoria the Department of Primary Industries funds the Responsible Pet Ownership Program.)
It commenced in January 2007 and by July 2007, 85 school visits had been visited, involving 25,000
children.

SPOT is a NSW schools program about pet care and kindness and respect for all animals. The program
aims to reach 250,000 junior primary children in NSW by 2010. It aims to reduce the incidence of dog
bites in children as well as to help children to recognise the importance of pets to our well-being and
encourage respect for all animals.

SPOT will be offered to all schools in NSW. Accredited volunteers run the presentations and include
representatives from the partner organisations and local councils. There are three modules:
1. Dog Safety
2. Pet Care
3. Kindness and Welfare


One of the major drivers for the Program was to reduce the number of dog attacks and injuries. The
Minister for Local Government was instrumental in getting the program established. The relationship
between local government and responsible pet ownership is quite clear in this situation.

SPOT relies on volunteers to undertake school visits. Volunteers are often enthusiastic and in this case
passionate about animals, however their training and delivery techniques may not be as thorough as
paid staff.

There is a Teacher Evaluation form within the SPOT Information and Resource Booklet for Teachers and
Schools. This provides an opportunity for some informal evaluation data to be collected. It is too early
in the program’s life for any considerable evaluation data to have been collected yet.

Other Programs targeted at school children
The RSPCA across Australia is a major provider of education and training to school children.
The Animal Welfare League of NSW (AWL) runs an education program for pre-school, primary and
secondary schools students teaching responsible pet ownership, safety around pets and animal
behaviour, called Operation Safe – Kids ‘n’ Pets. Because AWL is a partner in the NSW SPOT Program
the Operation Safe – Kids ‘n’ Pets program is currently not addressing children in kindergarten to
second grade as they are covered by SPOT for 2007-2009.

See the section on Informal Education – Animal Interest Organisations for details on other schools
education programs.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Formal Education – Government

Local Government and Animal Control and Regulation
Animal Control and Regulation (also known as Animal Management) is a function provided by local and
state governments. It provides a community management service comprising four elements -
regulation, education, information and infrastructure.

Local government councils across Australia are often the first point of call for information about owning
a cat or dog and management of these pets.

Animal Control and Regulation aims to facilitate relationships between pets, their owners and the
general community by educating the public in responsible pet ownership, enforcing relevant legislation
and regulations as well as minimising pet nuisance.

Workers in this sector are involved with handling all kinds of animals and may have to deal with critical
animal welfare issues as well as some uniquely sensitive public rights matters. Their work incorporates
significant public health, welfare and amenity elements and is often complicated by a range of
emotional stresses.

According to the Rural Training Council of Australia, Animal Regulation encompasses positions such as
pound manager, ranger, community officer, urban animal controller/manager, pest animal officer,
regulatory services manager, and animal inspector.

For example, in Victoria there are 82 Department of Primary Industries/RSPCA inspectors and 297
council officers (of which 125 are rural based). These numbers are growing annually both in real terms
and by replacement of officers who leave for promotion or other reasons.

The amount of time devoted to the animal management role by local government employees varies
considerably according to the size of the employer. Animal management duties may be specialised
positions for some council rangers, while others simultaneously carry out roles as diverse as parking
enforcement, health and building compliance, heavy vehicle enforcement and noxious weeds inspection.

Local Government, which is responsible for the implementation and enforcement of laws pertaining to
animal ownership, keeping etc, and sometimes welfare issues, is represented by the Australian Local
Government Association (elected councillors) and has a seat on the Council of Australian Governments
(COAG). Animal Management Officers and rangers are represented by the Local Government Managers
Association, which represents managers and aspiring managers in local government www.lgma.org.au/.

Animal control and regulation aspects
Animal shelters such as those operated by council pounds, Animal Welfare Leagues and the RSPCA play
an important role in society. They offer shelter to animals that have been abandoned, mistreated or are
no longer wanted.

Australia has one of the highest rates of pet ownership in the world. Studies have shown that four out
of every five Australians have had a pet at some point in their lives. For example it is estimated that
there are some two million companion animals in NSW, comprising 800,000 cats and 1.2 million dogs.

It is generally the role of animal control and regulation officers to ensure that lost or injured animals
can be returned to their owners. Animals are often taken into custody where they can be identified and
arrangements made for their safe return.

Other aspects of the job may involve taking enforcement action against irresponsible owners. Officers
may respond to calls from the public who report their concerns of animal wellbeing and they are often
required to work with a wide range of animals including horses, cattle, goats and sheep as well as




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


domestic pets such as dogs and cats. (Source: Animal Care and Management Training Package Agri-
Food Industry Skills Council).

Animal Management Plans
In Victoria and South Australia, every local government council is required to develop a Domestic
Animal Management Plan (by approximately the end of 2008). NSW is encouraging the preparation of
such plans.

Animal Management Plans are an important avenue for encouraging improved animal welfare practices
and education. Councils are in a position, thanks to their role in administering legislative requirements
and associated by-laws, to promote the welfare of animals and where needed to enforce regulations.

An Animal Management Plan is a strategic operational document for a council and should also address
the training and skills required for council staff involved with animal management – eg rangers, by-laws
officers. For example, rangers who are responsible for catching and impounding animals must be
suitably skilled to handle the animals humanely and with their welfare in mind.

Good examples of Animal Management Plans include:
• Campbelltown City Council Urban Animal Management Plan 2006-2001 (SA)
• City of Charles Sturt Strategy Urban Animal Management Plan 2004-2009 (SA)
• Onkaparinga Animal Management Plan (SA).

A combination of education, encouragement and enforcement is seen to be the most successful method
of animal management, according to the Campbelltown City Council Urban Animal Management Plan.
Animal Management Plans should include objectives and actions to achieve skilled and educated staff
responsible for councils’ animal management operations.

To assist councils in Victoria to develop required domestic animal management plan, the Victorian
Department of Primary Industries (Bureau of Animal Welfare) developed a step by step guide on how to
prepare a plan. The “How To Guide” sets a minimum standard model – a basic approach to developing
an animal management plan. It also encourages and presents information on how to develop a best
practice model, which is more participative, consultative and inclusive of stakeholders, than the basic
model. The “How To Guide" is a booklet and CD that includes a template for a domestic animal
management plan. The template clearly identifies training and development for Animal Management
Officers and Community Education to encourage Responsible Pet Ownership.

The NSW Department for Local Government put together a Guide To Preparing Strategic Companion
Animals Management Plans in 2001 to assist local government and other relevant authorities:

Animal Management Officers
Animal Management Officers (also known as Rangers, particularly in SA and WA) are the local
government officers with responsibility for by-laws surrounding domestic animal management.

An Animal Management Officer (AMO) should be knowledgeable and have the necessary skills to carry
out his/her duties, which includes matters related to animal care and welfare. An AMO should also be
looking at ways to encourage and increase the community’s understanding and knowledge of animal
welfare.

Training for Animal Management Officers
Certificate courses are being developed throughout Australia for Animal Management Officers which
include important animal handling and management skills. For example, the RSCPA in Victoria has
developed the Certificate IV in Animal Control and Regulation course which is designed for those
already working the urban animal management environment. It is suitable for AMOs looking to expand
their skills and knowledge.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Australian Institute of Animal Management
www.aiam.com.au/

The Australian Institute of Animal Management (AIAM) aims to encourage, assist and support
organizations and people working in animal management. The intent of AIAM is to help facilitate the
development of best practice in animal management. It also seeks to provide promotion and
coordination of animal management.

The AIAM was established in 2006 and it has taken on the functions associated with the support and
training of Animal Management Officers that was done by the AVA’s Urban Animal Management
Committee. The AIAM intends to produce a range of community and member benefits that include
especially, AMO training, the provision of accessible information resources and an excellent annual
national animal management conference.

Any person working in the field of animal management, animal control, regulatory services, local laws,
environmental health and related sectors is now able to become qualified in the field in which they
work. Qualification is obtained through the completion of Certificate IV in Animal Control and Regulation

The content of Certificate IV in Animal Control and Regulation supports the individual to gain a range of
more advanced skills and competency in the field of animal management, giving students the current
animal control and regulation qualification status.

In response to industry demands for a well-structured career pathway for animal management officers,
the Animal Care and Management Training Package (RUV40104) was developed, from which the
Certificate IV Animal Control and Regulation belongs.

The AIAM also runs an annual conference which is another valuable educational opportunities for
people working in the animal care sector.

Animal Welfare League NSW (AWL)
www.animalwelfareleague.com.au

AWL NSW offers training in animal behaviour and handling to council Animal Management Officers
(AMOs). This course has been designed to specifically deal with AMO issues and covers topics
including:
•      Animal ancestry
•      Animal body language
•      Animal behaviours
•      Occupational health and safety
•      Animal handling and the law – Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
•      A practical animal assessment component.

This one day course can be delivered onsite and can be tailored to the Council’s needs. For information
on training courses and dates, contact 1800 880 190, email training@animalwelfareleague.com.au.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Government

Victorian Government
www.pets.info.vic.gov.au

The “Community” branch of the Responsible Pet Ownership Education Program was launched in 1998,
with a mass media campaign. A responsible pet ownership website was established at this time.

The Program currently distributes hundreds of thousands of responsible pet ownership brochures,
posters and videos throughout the community each year. Various responsible pet ownership promotions
are also conducted, such as the Pet Registration Incentive Scheme. In addition, the Program provides
local councils with the education resources they need to promote responsible pet ownership at a local
level. These resources include pet event assistance and display equipment, "Communication Resource
Kits" (containing sample education campaign plans, template press releases, and event ideas), council
training seminars, a “Dog attack prevention kit” and a dog faeces “Litter Kit”.

The “Animal Management Officer Intranet Resource Site” is a password accessed site specifically for
council officers, to provide them with centralised access to a wide range of resources produced by the
Bureau of Animal Welfare and the Responsible Pet Ownership Program.

The RPO Program has a strong presence at the Royal Melbourne Show and other major events where
thousands of families get the opportunity to learn about responsible pet ownership.

Research has demonstrated that since the introduction of the Responsible Pet Ownership Program,
there has been an increase in pet registration rates and an increase in the number of cats that are
reclaimed from pounds and shelters.

Additionally there is a range of codes of practice relating to domestic animal businesses and a code of
practice for the private keeping of dogs.

NSW Government
http://www.dlg.nsw.gov.au/dlg/dlghome/dlg_InformationIndex.asp?areaindex=CA&index=301

The NSW Department of Local Government has a section on its website about Companion Animals.
Topics related to dogs are:
•     Information for dog owners in NSW
•     Restricted and dangerous dogs in NSW
•     Dogs in rural communities.

South Australian Dog and Cat Management Board
www.dogsncats.asn.au

The Dog and Cat Management Board of South Australia has been established under the Dog and Cat
Management Act 1995 (the Act) and is the only statutory authority of its kind in Australia. The Act
provides powers and functions for councils to manage day-to-day enforcement and administration of
the legislative provisions for the management of dogs and cats in the community.
Educational information on the Board’s website about dogs covers:

Other   general info includes;
•       Caring for Pets
•       Choosing the right pet
•       Quick find your Dog or Cat
•       Registration Rebates - Information Sheet
•       Training Concessions - Information Sheet
•       Why Spay or Neuter Your Pet.


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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


Western Australia
www.dlgrd.wa.gov.au/localGovt/DogOwnership

The WA Department of Local Government and Regional Development has a comprehensive website
about responsible dog ownership.

This website helps people understand their responsibilities in relation to owning a dog. It contains tips
on choosing the right dog, as well as caring for your dog, obedience training, how to behave around
dogs, and advice on safety around children.

In WA, dogs over the age of three months are required to be registered with a local government.
This site also has information about registering a dog and WA’s dog laws.


ACT
www.tams.act.gov.au/live/pets

Information on animal welfare, dog and cat laws, pet ownership and Domestic Animal Services in the
ACT can be found on the Department of Territory and Municipal Services website.




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Informal Education – Industry

Australian Companion Animal Council
www.acac.org.au

The purpose of the Australian Companion Animal Council is to provide a forum for the pet care industry
to promote the benefits of socially responsible companion animal ownership to individuals, the
community and Australia. The website includes position papers such as ‘responsible care of dogs’.

Pet Industry Association of Australia (PIAA)
www.piaa.net.au

The Pet Industry Association of Australia (PIAA) is the only industry association in Australia representing
the wide range of trading interests within the pet industry. The PIAA promotes responsible pet
ownership of companion animals in a commercial trading context. It is an association that is owned and
run by its members and operates as an industry support group for business operators in the commercial
pet industry in Australia. Membership is open to any registered business with an ABN regardless of its
size, location or type of companion animal business operation. PIAA’s membership is totally voluntary.
PIAA members have access to an education and training program with nationally recognised
qualifications. You need to be a member to log onto website to access Education section.

Information on the PIAA website centres around promoting why consumers should purchase pets
through a PIAA member store, or use a PIAA grooming member or boarding kennel.

Petnet
www.petnet.com.au
www.i-pet.com.au

The Petcare Information and Advisory Service Australia Pty Ltd (PIAS) was established in 1966 as an
autonomous, non-commercial organisation committed to promoting socially responsible pet ownership.
Funding is provided by Mars Petcare as a community service. The PIAS charter is: To educate owners
on the responsibilities of pet ownership; To undertake original research on the relationship between
man and companion animals; To ensure accurate and reliable information is available to all interested
parties on pet related issues; To encourage pet ownership in balance with society's needs, and help
owners enjoy their pets; To provide information on and encourage the correct care of pets.

There are sections on the website covering:
• Pet Ownership Publications
• For Schools
• For Veterinarians
• For Journalists
• For Welfare Services
• For Government

Petnet has initiated many community and school education programs to encourage the correct care of
pets and promote socially responsible pet ownership. These include the production and wide
dissemination of "How to care for..." literature, posters and videos, and the Selectapet program which
encourages people to choose the most appropriate breed of dog or cat.

Petnet pioneered a pet care school's talk program and was involved in the development and promotion
of the Australian Veterinary Association's primary school education program, AVA PetPEP.

PIAS has also developed the i-pet website that also has a lot of information for the general public about
owning a pet.



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Petalia
www.petalia.com.au/dogs/

The Petalia website has information about dog ownership and care.

Australian National Kennel Council
www.ankc.aust.com

The Australian National Kennel Council (ANKC) promotes excellence in breeding, showing, trialing,
obedience and other canine related activities and the ownership of temperamentally and physically
sound pure-bred dogs by responsible individuals across Australia.

The Council promotes responsible dog ownership and encourages State Member Bodies to put in place
programs to that effect. It also acts as spokesperson on all canine related activities on a national basis
on behalf of State Member Bodies.

The ANKC National Code of Ethics on Responsible Dog Ownership and Policy Statements include
commitments to basic concepts of dog welfare. It has links to state and territory member organisations
such as Dogs NSW (Promoting Responsible Dog Ownership - www.dogsnsw.org.au)

Australian School of Petcare Studies
www.petcarecourses.com

The Australian School of Petcare Studies offers Distance Education study programs in all fields of Animal
Welfare & Development. The Distance Education programs are designed to give students flexibility and
convenience to complete the program in their own time, at their own pace and in the privacy of their
own home. Programs are via traditional correspondence and online. There are a number of courses
available for a wide range of people from professionals to pet owners.

2007 courses were:

Grooming
Pet Grooming - Mobile Dog Wash
Canine Care & Professional Grooming
Advanced Grooming and Clipping Techniques
Canine Dog Spa Services
ASPCS Diploma in Applied Canine Styling & Management

Behavioural Sciences
Canine Behavioural Training
Canine Psychology and Development
Advanced Studies: Applied Canine Behavioural Training and Handling

Animal Welfare and Development
Animal Welfare and Nurses Aid
Junior Animal Nursing Assistant
ASPCS Practical Award in Junior Animal Nursing and Management
Kennel Management
Pet Shop Attendant
Pet Care Studies
ASPCS Diploma in Applied Animal Handling and Management




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Thomson Education Direct

Pet Obedience Trainer Course
http://www.thomsoneducationdirect.com.au/index.cfm?id=142

The Thomson Education Direct Pet Obedience Trainer course teaches students essential methods of
disciplining dogs. Students learn about canine behaviour, perception and training - skills that can be put
to work at home with students’ own pets, with show dogs or in starting up a kennelling business.

The course teaches discipline concepts and ways to motivate a dog and about canine nutritional needs,
grooming, exercise and other health requirements.

Pet Groomer Course
http://www.thomsoneducation.com.au/animal-care/pet-groomer

Keeping dogs and cats properly groomed is important for their comfort. The Thomson Education Pet
Groomer course gives students a solid grounding in professional level grooming.
Students learn to handle different personalities, to allay fear, soothe aggression and make the grooming
experience safe and comfortable for the animal and its owner.


Australian Association of Professional Dog Trainers
www.aapdt.org/

The Australian Association of Professional Dog Trainers, Inc (AAPDT) was created from the PDTAV - the
Professional Dog Trainers Association of Victoria, Inc. It was the first organisation in Australia to
accredit professional dog trainers and has been doing so since 1992. It is one of a few associations that
accredits professional dog trainers & instructors in Australia.

The AAPDT covers information about training techniques which are relevant to animal welfare.

Dogs Victoria
www.vca.org.au/Content.asp?ID=96

DOGS Victoria is the peak body representing owners and breeders of purebred dogs in Victoria and has
a history dating back to 1877. It is a member of the Australian National Kennel Council.

Over 280 individual clubs representing Agility, Conformation, Earthdog, Endurance, Field Trials, Herding,
Lure Coursing, Lure Racing, Obedience, Retrieving and Tracking, are affiliated with DOGS Victoria, with
whom it works to achieve its purpose.

The website has a section dedicated to care of the dog.




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Dogs New South Wales
www.dogsnsw.org.au

This organisation has operated since 1948 when it was known as the Royal Agricultural Society Kennel
Club. Dogs New South Wales was launched in July 2006 representing the Royal NSW Canine Council
Ltd.

The principal objectives of the Dogs NSW are to:
- Promote and raise the standards of breeding purebred dogs.
- Maintain the Register of purebred dogs.
- Promote responsible dog ownership amongst the members and community.
- Promote the various activities of the Dogs NSW, which include Dog Shows, Obedience, Agility,
   Working and Sporting Dog Trials.
- Promote and assist and to make contributions to canine veterinary research and to create and
   endow scholarships and fellowships.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Veterinary

Australian Veterinary Association
www.ava.com.au

The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) is the professional organisation representing veterinarians
across Australia. The Australian Veterinary Association has a strong emphasis on companion animals.
The AVA aims to advance veterinary science by:
- Publishing and promoting high quality refereed scientific and clinical articles via the Australian
    Veterinary Journal.
- Promoting continuing education for members via the AVA Conference and other high quality events
    and opportunities, and increasing utilisation of AVA VetEd
- Acting and speaking with one voice to ensure that AVA member-generated policy informs decision-
    makers and makes veterinary science visible in Australian community debates
- Demonstrating that all AVA members adhere to the AVA Professional Code of Conduct, and
- Providing excellent service to members, while continually striving to achieve high standards of
    management and governance.

AVA Animal Welfare Trust
The AVA Animal Welfare Trust was established to support and promote welfare research and education
for all animal species - including pets, farm and laboratory animals, wildlife and zoo species.
The Animal Welfare Trust is involved in a range of educational projects to improve standards of animal
care, supports research to improve animal welfare, and distributes the latest welfare information to
veterinarians and others involved in caring for animals.


Australian Small Animal Veterinary Association
www.asava.com.au

The Australian Small Animal Veterinary Association (ASAVA) represents the special interests of
Australian small animal practitioners on a national basis, urban and country, free from regional bias.
The association was formed in 1967 and today has over 1,000 members in Australia and in New
Zealand and other countries. The association is dedicated to the advancement of veterinary science,
continuing education for its members and the promotion of high quality companion animal practice.


AVA Urban Animal Management Committee
www.uam.net.au

Urban Animal Management (UAM) is a discipline which encompasses all those activities which help
manage urban companion animals. It covers aspects as diverse as microchipping of dogs to market
research about the community's attitudes to pet ownership. Because of its breadth, UAM depends on
the interactions of people with many different job descriptions and training, including: animal
management officers, veterinarians, marketers, town planners, dog trainers and politicians.

For 16 years, the Australian Veterinary Association promoted and encouraged good urban animal
management policy and practice through its Urban Animal Management Committee (UAM), principally
through an annual conference. The proceedings of 15 of these conferences are available. Members
were instrumental in the development of the Cert IV in Animal Control and Regulation, part of the
Animal Care and Management Training Package.

In 2006, the old UAM Committee was dissolved. Some members formed the Australian Institute of
Animal Management (see the information later in this report on the Institute). Others were appointed
by the AVA to a new committee, the Centre for Companion Animals in the Community.



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This Centre develops resources for veterinarians, local and state government, policy advice and working
with councils and developers to provide for the needs of pets and pet owners in our community are.
A website is under development; in the meantime, contact email info@uam.net.au.
Anticipated website is www.ccac.net.au.

The Centre works more at a legislation and Policy level, rather than education. It promotes the welfare
of animals as an important outcome of good animal management. The Centre’s new website will
facilitate access by all in the community to an enormous body of literature on animal management and
community animal issues.


Australian Companion Animal Health Foundation
www.ava.com.au

The Australian Companion Animal Health Foundation (ACAHF) was formed to fund research projects to
further our knowledge of the cause, treatment and prevention of diseases of companion animals, chiefly
dogs and cats. Established in 1989 it is a non-profit trust of the AVA.

The Foundation raises money through donations from veterinarians, companies associated with the pet
industry, pet owners and other concerned members of the public. The ACAHF distributes funds for
projects after assessment by the Research Committee. The Research Committee consists of eminent
veterinarians working either in private practice or in veterinary schools around Australia.

The type of research funded is wide ranging but it must be clinically orientated and must be for the
benefit of companion animal species. All research projects must conform to the very strict animal
welfare guidelines of the AVA and the National Health and Medical Research Council.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Animal Interest Organisations

Delta Society
www.deltasocietyaustralia.com.au

Delta Society Australia promotes and facilitates positive interaction between people and animals.
It is a national non-profit organisation. Its two programs relevant to general public education are:

1.   The Delta Canine Good Citizen™ education programs aims to produce well socialized, behaved pet
     dogs and informed, competent, responsible owners - good citizens on both ends of the leash.
     It includes a vocational dog trainer's course, which leads the way to the award of Certificate IV in
     Companion Animal Services. There are accredited Delta Canine Good Citizen™ trainers in all states
     and territories of Australia, as well as some in New Zealand.

     Note: The Delta Canine Good Citizen Certificate IV pet dog trainer's course runs over a period of
     eighteen months. There are two residential segments, each of five days, the first at the beginning
     of the course (during the first university/TAFE semester break, usually immediately after Easter)
     and the second approximately 15 months later (during the second university/TAFE semester
     break). There are also 500 to 600 hours of distance education involving written and practical
     assignments. Students who achieve the Certificate IV and are actively involved in dog training as
     private trainers, in dog clubs or in their work environment (using reward based methods) may be
     granted Delta accreditation and listing on the Delta website.

2.   The Delta Purina Pet Partners program has almost 600 trained volunteers and their Delta
     accredited pet dogs who visit a very wide range of health and community facilities, including
     children's and adult hospitals, nursing homes, hospices, physical rehabilitation and mental health
     units, children with special needs and adult day care centres. Delta Purina Pet Partners operates in
     SA, Victoria, NSW and Queensland.

Note: Delta Society is a Registered Training Organisation and offers the Certificate IV Companion
Animal Services course.

RSPCA
www.rspca.org.au

RSPCA Australia is the federal body of the eight autonomous state and territory RSPCAs in Australia.
RSPCA Australia establishes national policies and positions on animal welfare and liaises with
government and industry on national animal welfare issues.

RSPCA Paw Prints Club
www.rspca.org.au/kidsworld/Pawprints-Club.html

The Club is for kids who love animals! Paw Prints Club members receive four Paw Prints magazines a
year. Each magazine has animal news, features, celebrity interviews, games, along with updates on the
latest animal news and issues and provides readers with the very best in pet care information.
Membership fee is $20.

RSPCA Queensland
www.rspcaqld.org.au

The RSPCA Qld Humane Education Department delivers education programs to schools and the
community. Programs foster humane values towards animals, people and the environment. Lessons can




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be adapted to suit the requirements of your students and cover such topics as Responsible Pet
Ownership, The role of the RSPCA in preventing animal cruelty and Careers in Animal Welfare.

School visits
Preschool to Year 12, curriculum-linked free programs. RSPCA Education Officers will visit schools.

Shelter Tours
Some RSPCA Qld Shelters offer tours for school groups and members of the community.

AVA PetPEP
RSPCA Qld endorses and sponsors the Australian Veterinary Association’s PetPEP Program – Pets and
People Education Program.

RSPCA EMU (Qld)
The EMU is RSPCA Queensland’s Education Mobile Unit. It is a classroom on wheels for kids and adults,
equipped with the latest in computer and audiovisual technology. It is fun filled learning about animal
care for 4 to 100 year-olds – and supports the school curriculum from pre-school to Grade 12. Since
2003, EMU has been visited by more than 100,000 people. Education Queensland accredits the EMU
experience. EMU regularly travels interstate to NSW. Proposals are currently under way for a national
EMU Tour.

RSPCA NSW
www.rspcansw.org.au

“Educating young people is the best way to improve the welfare of animals and prevent cruelty.”
(RSPCA NSW website).

The RSPCA's humane education program focuses on empathy, responsibility and respect for all animals
and is aimed at both primary and high school children. It aims to positively change students’ behaviour
and attitudes towards animals through interesting, informative and eye-opening lessons.
This program is a free service for NSW schools.

Specialist staff and volunteers teach children to develop empathy towards animals and become
responsible pet owners. Each year RSPCA humane education staff and volunteers visit hundreds of
schools and community groups with the hope of changing the future and wiping out animal cruelty.
Each lesson lasts half an hour. Each school also receives an All Creatures Club pack including curriculum
linked lesson sequences and an informational CD ROM.

Currently there are two teacher-qualified Education Officers in the metropolitan area of NSW. In regional
areas there are trained RSPCA Education volunteers who can offer a smaller range of lessons.

"Humane Education explores how we might live with compassion and respect for everyone - not just
our friends and neighbours but all people; not just our dogs and cats but all animals; not just our
homes but the earth itself; our ultimate home."

RSPCA NSW Primary School Program

Kindy/Early Stage 1 (ES1)
Prevent a bite program - Allows children to learn the correct way to approach dogs and help us to
reduce the risk of dog bites. (Curriculum link: Play It Safe, Personal Development, Health and Physical
Education [PDHPE]).

Year 1 & 2/ Stage 1 (S1) - Max Pack
With the help of the plush toy dog Max, Education Officers show students the role of the RSPCA in our
society and the skills needed to be a responsible pet owner. (Curriculum links: Workers in the
community, Human Society and its Environment [HSIE], The need for shelter, HSIE, Getting along with
others, PDHPE).



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Year 3 & 4/Stage 2 (S2) - Cat Tales
Because cats are an easy target for cruelty, this lesson aims to encourage positive attitudes towards
cats through an exciting and interesting journey through time; looking at cats in history and their
amazing adaptations. Education Officers discuss important welfare issues and together with the
students create a humane home environment for all animals. (Curriculum links: Building my network
PDHPE and Living in communities HSIE).

Year 5 & 6/ Stage 3 (S3) - Playing my part
Students learn about the RSPCA as a charity and its role in the community. Through investigating some
local animal cruelty cases and an international case study, students reflect on their own role in the
community as a responsible citizen and also think about the part they can play from a global
perspective. (Curriculum links: Playing my part PDHPE and Current Issues HSIE).

High School Program
RSPCA representatives offer a face-to-face high school PowerPoint presentation on The Prevention of
Cruelty to Animals Act and the role of the RSPCA in society. Also available is a PowerPoint presentation
on animal related careers - examples of the many different careers that involve working with animals
and the 'pathways students' can take to achieve their career goal. The high school program is currently
being restructured.

RSPCA Tales series
Created for primary children, the RSPCA Tales series aims to increase children's empathy for animals
and their understanding of what the RSPCA does. Schools purchasing a set receive a free teacher's
resource for lower primary children containing classroom activities that highlight important character
concepts such as responsibility, kindness, courage, respect, commitment and fairness.

RSPCA All Creatures Club
Website: www.rspcansw.org.au/what_we_do/humane_education/all_creatures_club

The RSPCA also encourages primary school teachers and students to start their own RSPCA All
Creatures Club to help students raise awareness about the welfare of animals among their peers.
Existing club members create posters and raise funds for their local shelter. Each club receives a CD
ROM, badges, certificates and regular updates. Club activities and information can be sent to the
RSPCA NSW to be displayed on their website.

RSCPA Victoria
www.rspcavic.org

The Education Centre at RSPCA in Burwood East offers students a wide range of learning experiences.
The rustic barn is stocked with a selection of pets and farm animals for children to handle or observe
close up. The theatrette offers the benefits of closed circuit television, DVD, video and on-line
technology, broadcast on a 4-metre x 3-metre screen. The gallery provides a venue in which students
engage in exploratory, multi-sensory activities that contribute to the fulfilment of learning outcomes.

There is a lot of information on the RSCPA’s Victorian website about how to care for various types of
animals. School holiday programs are also offered at the Education Centre.

The RSPCA Paw Prints Club is also available at
www.rspcavic.org/kids_stuff/paw_prints_membership.htm

Pre-School Education
Can I pat your dog? (Suitable for 4 year olds plus)
This program is offered at the RSPCA Education Centre in Burwood East or visits to kindergarten or pre-
school can be arranged. Learn about how to meet and greet one of our education dogs, practice what
to do, and then do it. Discusses why this approach is so important, and how to care for dogs.




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Primary Schools
The programs below are offered at the RSPCA Education Centre in Burwood East, however visits to
schools can be arranged.

Prep, Years 1 and 2
Pets, Pets & Pets - Victorian Essential Learning Standards (VELS) Levels 1 & 2
Visit the Education Barn at Burwood and enjoy a story, delve into an animal feely bag or play a memory
game. Children meet many of the RSPCA Vic’s special education animals. Children will discover that a
pet's needs are similar to our own and learn more about the responsibilities of owning a pet.

Hooves, Paws & Claws - VELS Levels 1 & 2
Only available at the Education Barn at Burwood, children meet farm animals, feed a cow, pat a sheep,
get up close and personal with Gus the pony, and look at the roles they play in our lives. We will
explore their needs and compare them with our own.

Years 3 and 4
Creatures, Caring & Community - VELS Levels 3
Look at the RSPCA and how it cares for Creatures Great and Small. We will investigate how the
community is involved and what we can do to help. Lots of ideas for fundraising activities are included.

Years 5 and 6
RSPCA - Rights, Roles & Responsibilities - VELS Levels 4

A deeper understanding of the needs and rights of animals is highlighted for students in Years 5 and 6.
They will become aware of the implications and the responsibilities required in caring for animals and
how the RSPCA can play a part in this. They will be challenged to think about issues relating to animals
through discussions on current RSPCA campaigns and animal welfare issues. The students will gain a
greater understanding of the role of the RSPCA in their community and how they can become involved
if they wish to. Students can see some behind the scene action at the RSPCA’s shelter and veterinary
clinic via either closed circuit television or a short tour. Animal case studies will be discussed in the
Education Barn at Burwood.

Secondary Schools
Australia has the highest rate of pet ownership, per household, in the world. The RSPCA’s Education
Service focuses students on the animals they come into the most contact with; their pets. The RSPCA
Education Service presents programs to secondary schools covering English, Science, VCE Biology, and
Agricultural Studies, Careers with animals and VCAL. All programs address both the VELS and VCE
curricula as well as immersing students in an animal welfare organisation like the RSPCA.

Tertiary students
Tertiary students can have the opportunities to meet the RSPCA’s vets, inspectors, animal attendants
and educators. A variety of presentations can be conducted in the theatrette and visits to the Veterinary
Clinic and Animal Shelter can be organised.

RSPCA South Australia
www.rspcasa.asn.au

RSPCA SA takes an active role to educate students about caring for animals by conducting school talks
and shelter tours.

The Executive Officer RSPCA SA talks to school assemblies about the role of the RSPCA. RSPCA SA
aspires to the Victorian model of an Education centre, an Education team and curriculum resource
materials designed for SA schools (Peters, pers comm., 2007). Jackie Horton, RSPCA Lonsdale Animal
Shelter Manager, SA runs training courses for Council Dog Management Officers. RSPCA SA also has a
strong presence at the Royal Adelaide Show, community events, pet expos and police events.




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RSPCA Tasmania
www.rspcatas.org.au

Underpinning the core philosophy of the RSPCA is public education. Whilst education is an ongoing
process, one of the primary features of this service is the School Education Program.

School visits can take from 20 minutes for easily distracted primary school-aged and infants, up to one
to two hours for older students and for specialist topics. Each session can be tailored to cover specific
issues the school wishes to address.

All   sessions tend to contain basic RSPCA information as an introduction that might include:
•      RSPCA Philosophy
•      RSPCA Tasmania
•      Animal Welfare Act 1993
•      Pet Care
•      Animal Welfare
•      Reporting Animal Cruelty

Sessions can be delivered lecture-style, or in a less formal way with lots of interaction with students.
Sessions may take place at the animal shelter or school depending on the specific requirements of the
pupils. School visits can be made by appointment by calling a local branch.

The RSPCA Tasmania will soon be launching an interactive educational CD-ROM for distribution to all
schools across Tasmania. Lesson plans and student information kits that become available before the
launch date will be downloadable from this site.

RSPCA Western Australia
www.rspcawa.asn.au

RSPCA WA has an Education team that caters for students of all ages either playing host to schools at
the RSPCA shelter or visiting schools and other premises. The team consists of qualified teachers and
volunteers, many with teaching experience. A visit to the RSPCA animal shelter at Malaga enables
students to be involved in a wide range of learning experiences with direct interaction with animals.

Whether visiting the shelter or having a visit at your school the level of information and activities
provided depends on the year group, the learning area and desired outcomes the teacher wishes to
focus upon. The aim is to meet individual teachers’ requirements as much as possible.

Resource materials
There are two detailed lesson resource packs for primary school years for sale. RSPCA WA can provide
teachers and students with individual activity sheets on a variety of subjects. There is a range of
resources on the website.

RSPCA ACT
www.rspca-act.org.au

The RSPCA ACT Humane Education programs aim to create an awareness and understanding of the
roles of the RSPCA within the community, to promote responsible pet ownership and most importantly
to help instil a sense of empathy for all living creatures in today’s youth.

The Education section offers school programs consisting of lessons and activities designed for school
aged children from Kindergarten through to secondary school. Topics can vary from endangered and
threatened species to animal welfare issues and programs can be catered to suit the needs of the
classroom teacher. Guided tours of the shelter are offered to both school and community groups.




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Prevent-a-Bite Program
RSPCA ACT has developed a ‘Prevent-a-Bite’ program due to the increasing number of dog bite
incidents occurring across Australia. The program is designed for teaching programs as part of the
Health and Physical Education conceptual strand “Safety”. The hands-on demonstration runs for
approximately 40 mins (including time for questions). Staff and students will learn what to do if:
• they are approached by a strange dog
• they are being attacked by a dog
• they are being chased by a dog
• how to approach a dog safely.

On Site Programs

Keeping Our Pets Happy and Healthy!
Kindy – Yr 2
Duration: 40-50 mins
Minimum number of students: 10. Maximum number of students: 30

This program is designed to teach students about caring for their pets. The program is offered on-site
and includes:
• A guided tour of RSPCA ACT
• Talk - What do our pets need to be happy and healthy?
• Talk and demonstration from our Animal Behaviourist and some four legged friends
• Interactive - Being safe around dogs, students have a chance to meet and greet animals (Merlin,
    the Education Dog and Rosie, the Shelter Dog)
• Talk and demonstration by RSPCA Veterinarian (if available)
• Question time

This program can be easily integrated into the curriculum under the key learning areas of Health and
Physical Education, as well as Safety and Science – Life and Living.

Animal Welfare League NSW (AWL)
www.animalwelfareleague.com.au

Animal Welfare League NSW (AWL) is Australia’s second largest animal welfare charity comprising of
two animal shelters and 14 branches of volunteers in NSW. AWL offers a variety of education and
training programs – see also the Formal Education section and Informal Education State and Local
Government. AWL offers an education presentation to service clubs and community groups such as
Rotary, Probus, View Clubs etc, as well as Scout and Cub groups, Guides and before and after school
care groups.

Voiceless – Animal Club and Voiceless Animal Advocates
www.voiceless.org.au

Voiceless is an animal protection organisation. It states: “Animals in Australia are suffering terribly.
They have no voice, can not defend themselves and are considered ‘objects’ under our law.”

Voiceless is becoming active in the field of education and “hopes to ensure that the children and youth
of today become the compassionate and informed decision-makers of tomorrow - taking action for
animals.”

Voiceless has two educational initiatives - Animal Club and Voiceless Animal Advocates.

Animal Club
www.animalclub.org.au
Animal Club is a national network of clubs in schools across Australia. Animal Club provides young
people with a network through which they can take part in activities that promote respect and
compassion for animals. Voiceless states on its website that this is the only national animal education


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program that inspires and informs students about animal protection issues and rewards schools through
funding, prizes and incentives. The Club provides information, resources and links to humane education.
School grants (or “seed funding”) are available throughout the year via Animal Club.

Voiceless Animal Advocates
http://www.vaa.org.au/
Voiceless Animal Advocates (VAA) is a national network of student societies on university campuses.
VAA provides a forum to promote respect and compassion for animals amongst university students.
Students on a particular campus run each VAA. VAA will organise activities at their university or in the
community to raise awareness of animal protection issues. Currently, VAA is focusing on law students
and Animal Law reform. Voiceless plans to expand VAA to encompass other university disciplines
including veterinary science, politics and economics.

Grants Program
Voiceless has a Grants Program that offers financial support to non-profit organisations, councils and
universities for the design and implementation of projects which improve the lives of animals in
Australia.

Animals Australia
www.animalsaustralia.org

Animals Australia (AA) is Australia's second largest national animal protection organisation, representing
some 40 member societies and thousands of individual supporters throughout Australia. AA has a track
record in investigating and exposing animal cruelty.

AA believes that we can create a better world for all through promoting kindness to animals. Its goal is
to significantly and permanently improve the welfare of all animals in Australia. AA regularly exposes
suffering, and attempts to educate the broader community. AA maintains it researches alternatives and
lobbies governments to effect changes in laws to protect all animals.
AA is a non-profit charitable organisation financed through community support.

One of Animals Australia’s identified issues is 'companion animals'. Animals Australia is primarily an
information source not an educator. The website does ask people to actively ‘Speak Up for Animals’.
It urges people to learn about the issues from AA materials and to carry out a number of actions to
contribute to improved animal rights. It provides a 10-point guide for action that includes writing letters
to politicians and company directors (templates provided), ringing radio shows, and distributing AA
leaflets.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
www.peta.org

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) is the largest animal rights organisation in the world.

PETA focuses its attention on the four areas in which the largest numbers of animals suffer the most
intensely for the longest periods of time: on factory farms, in laboratories, in the clothing trade, and in
the entertainment industry. PETA also work on a variety of other issues, including the abuse of
backyard dogs. PETA works through public education, cruelty investigations, research, animal rescue,
legislation, special events, celebrity involvement, and protest campaigns.

It has a number of companion animal fact sheets on its website including:
•      Animal Shelters: Hope for the Homeless
•      Declawing Cats: Manicure or Mutilation?
•      Doing What's Best for Our Companion Animals
•      Pet Shops: No Bargain for Animals
•      Pound Seizure: The Shame of Shelters
•      Puppy Mills: Dogs Abused for the Pet Trade
•      Why Animals Do Not Make Good Gifts.


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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


Dogs Across Australia
www.dogsacrossaustralia.com

Dogs Across Australia provides links to and assists around 25 ‘No Kill’ dog rescue shelters operating in
Australia. These shelters, their volunteers and foster carers, rescue dogs, mainly from death row in
council pounds. Many council pounds are eager to see the dogs re-homed. Nevertheless, in Australia,
about 200,000 healthy, viable dogs are killed each year.

There is an Educating Teachers & Students section on the Dogs Across Australia website. The focus is
saving dogs from pounds. The website mainly provides information but also has some resources for
teachers.

Lost Dogs Home
www.dogshome.com

The Lost Dogs' Home is Australia's largest animal shelter and offers the community a wide variety of
animal welfare services including:
•     Animal Management Services for local governments throughout Australia
•     Shelter and adoption service for cats and dogs
•     The National Pet Register - free pet registration and identification
•     Veterinary clinic for the general public
•     Lost and found information service
•     24-hour 7-day a week ambulance service
•     Boarding kennels and cattery
•     Puppy preschool training programme
•     School talks on responsible pet ownership
•     Training in animal control

Lort Smith Animal Hospital
www.lortsmith.com

The Lort Smith Animal Hospital is a non-profit animal hospital located in North Melbourne, Victoria. The
hospital has been dedicated to the care and welfare of animals and their owners for more than 70
years. The hospital provides care for stray and unwanted animals, a dedicated cattery and kennels
reunite or re-home thousands of cats and dogs each year. The website has information about pet care.

Animal Protection and Welfare League of Queensland (AWL Qld)
www.awlqld.com.au

Since 1959, Animal Welfare League of Queensland Inc. (AWL Qld) has been providing health care, food,
shelter and love for society's unwanted, abandoned, injured and homeless animals. Annually, AWL cares
for more than 10,000 stray and abandoned companion animals on the Gold Coast and surrounds.

AWL is a non-profit, non-government funded, charitable organisation that provides quality veterinary
services through its vet clinic and an after hours ambulance service for injured animals.

AWL educates school children and their communities about caring responsibly for companion animals
with curriculum linked education programs and hands-on companion animal care courses.

AWL works to end euthanasia of over 200,000 healthy companion animals per year in shelters all over
Australia through the development of community awareness campaigns and supportive laws and policies.

AWL has initiated the following campaigns and programs:
•    The National Summit to End Pet Overpopulation.
•    The Companion Animal Stakeholder Coalition - a collaboration of professionals who have an
     interest in ending the euthanasia of healthy pets.



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            AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


•      Caring Responsibly for Your Cat and Dog is an educational DVD, produced by AWL Qld in
       conjunction with the Companion Animal Stakeholder Coalition. The DVD covers all of the
       information a prospective new pet owner needs to know, and is available through pet stores and
       animal shelters at no cost to persons interested in purchasing a pet.
•      The Desexing Fund is set up to assist pet owners in genuine financial need to have their pets
       desexed for the cost of a small donation.
•      The National Desexing Network (NDN) is a program which promotes desexing through linking
        T




       vets with pet owners who cannot afford to desex their pets. Each year in the month of August,
       the NDN in conjunction with the AWL Qld, promote National Desexing Month across Australia.

The AWL Education team visits schools and conducts classroom talks to pre-schoolers through to senior
grades. Students gain knowledge on caring for their companion animals and they also have the chance
to get up-close with some of the AWL Qld Shelter dogs and cats.

The AWL has developed Teacher Resource Kits. Each kit includes an outcomes linked Integrated
Education Unit with reproducible Black line Masters, posters, stickers and more. So far there are
Resource Kits for Lower Primary: Companion Animals and their Needs, Middle Primary: Caring for
Companion Animals, and High School: Making a Difference for Companion Animals.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Community-based Animal Interest
Organisations
There are numerous not-for-profit, community-based animal interest organisations that play a role in
promoting the welfare of animals to the general public. For example, animal welfare shelters that care
for lost or abandoned animals or who take in animals whose owners are no longer able to care for them.

The first two organisations listed below, have information on their websites and act as educators
regarding the care of pets. Although the other organisations don’t have readily identifiable information
or education materials, they undoubtedly play a part in encouraging improved animal welfare. This list
is not exhaustive.

Animal Aid, Victoria
www.vaat.org.au

Caring for animals and encouraging people to be more active with their pets are the main drivers
behind every program of the Animal Aid (AA). "Positive Pets" sums up AA’s general philosophy at the
shelter. An average of 250 dogs and 100 cats and kittens arrive at the shelter in Lilydale in eastern
Melbourne each month.

Animal Aid provides students with the opportunities to learn and grow in a work environment. Students
from local schools and from tertiary institutions such as Box Hill TAFE and Melbourne University
participate. Spending time at the shelter provides students with the chance to experience a range of
activities. Many students go on to participate in the animal welfare industry. Students discover that
animal welfare is not just about animal handling.

Animal Aid provides education and training resources to pet owners. Understanding a dog's behaviour
can be instrumental in preventing the development of unwanted and hard to manage behaviour traits.
Each week, Animal Aid conducts dog training classes at the K9 Kompany facility in Lilydale.

Recently, Animal Aid has developed a Safe Haven program in conjunction with Melbourne’s Eastern
Domestic Violence Outreach service, providing emergency boarding for animals belonging to victims of
domestic violence. In many instances victims will delay escaping a violent relationship if they have to
leave their pets behind.

Pet Rescue
www.petresuce.com.au

PetRescue was launched in September 2004 after consultation with animal rescue groups around the
country revealed that they were keen to harness the potential of the internet, but with stretched
resources were not able to get online effectively.

With each group having an individual website, information on available pets was difficult to find.
PetRescue makes it easy for potential adopters to find and save a rescue animal by bringing this
information to the one place and it has since grown to be one of the largest pet sites in Australia.
Rescue groups from all over the country have worked together to save more than 10,000 animals in its
first 2 years of operation.

There is an Information Library on the website that includes articles on Living with Pets.

Animal Protection Society of Western Australia
www.animalprotectionsociety.westnet.com.au

Animal Protection Society of Western Australia promotes kindness and welfare and prevention or
suppression of cruelty to animals and other creatures. It opposes vivisection.


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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



The Animal Protection Society of Western Australia operates a refuge in Southern River in Perth.
It encourages people to adopt a lost dog or cat. There are details on the website of lost dogs and cats.
It provides some basic information about what to think about before purchasing a dog or cat.
There is no specific information about the welfare of animals for the public.

The Dogs' Refuge Home (WA)
www.dogshome.org.au

The Dogs' Refuge Home (W.A.) Inc., is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to the rescue, care and
re-homing of dogs. The Home was established in 1935 and is one of the oldest animal welfare agencies
in Australia. Activities are motivated by the fundamental understanding that dogs are entitled to the
same love and respect that they unconditionally give to us.

Based at Shenton Park, Perth, the kennels are capable of housing up to 150 dogs, dog re-homing being
at the heart of our operations. Dog’s Refuge employs a pro-life policy which ensures that no dog will be
euthanised on economic grounds. It offers a range of services, such as dog boarding and obedience
training classes. It also encourages responsible dog ownership via a range of education and community
projects.

The website does not detail the organisation’s range of education projects. It is primarily a shelter.

K9 Dog Rescue
www.k9dogrescue.com

K9 is a non-profit organisation operated by volunteers, and financed by donations, membership and
fundraising. Since 1990 K9 Dog Rescue has rescued and rehomed thousands of dogs. K9 operates in
Peel Region, approximately 75km south of Perth near Mandurah.

K9 tries to educate the public about the need for sterilisation of all dogs that are not for breeding
purposes, this goes a long way to reducing the number of strays and abandoned dogs which can
ultimately find their way into Pounds and K9 Dog Rescue.

K9’s aim is to re-home abandoned, mistreated and unloved dogs while trying to advise the public on
responsible pet ownership. K9 supplies veterinary care and finds new homes for dogs and puppies due
to be destroyed at the Pounds.

K9 is primarily a shelter program.

Saving Animals from Euthanasia (SAFE)
www.safe.asn.au

SAFE began in the Pilbara region of Western Australia in Karratha in February 2003 to address the lack
of an animal shelter for homeless cats and dogs. In the past many of these animals were euthanased
because there was no organisation to facilitate the rescue and rehoming of these animals.

SAFE has set up a network of temporary carers who open their homes to abandoned cats & dogs whilst
permanent homes are sought. The need for the services which SAFE provides is not isolated to the
Pilbara.

SAFE’s vision is that further branches will be established in locations where there is currently no animal
shelter or rescue program. The primary goal for SAFE is to make a difference in the quality of life for
cats & dogs and to promote the immense value to humans of pet ownership.

SAFE is an animal shelter. It encourages people to support the shelter and support abandoned cats
and dogs and to care about their welfare.



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           AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Companion animals – Cats
Cats are an important companion for many Australians – particularly for older people who often can’t
exercise a dog adequately or for people who live in high-density accommodation. About a quarter of all
Australian households have a cat as a pet. 6

Only Victoria and NSW have compulsory cat legislation. South Australia has a Cat Management Act, but
the management of cats is left to the discretion of individual local government councils.

Responsible cat ownership
Like, responsible dog ownership, cat owners have to care for their animal and take responsibility for its
impact on others and the environment.

A cat owner bears the responsibility if a cat bites or scratches a human, kills wildlife, causes damage to
property, creates noise or other pollution, or is the direct cause of other community costs.

Identification – microchipping
Identification of dogs and cats is an integral part of responsible pet ownership and is a foundation for
the appropriate care and welfare of animals.

Microchipping improves the chances of a cat being returned to its owner if it is lost. The microchip is a
small chip the size of a grain of rice that is inserted under the skin on the back of the cat's neck. When
purchasing a cat the owner fills in their contact details on a form and these details are then put into a
database against the cat's microchip number.

A number of states now have legislation requiring microchipping identification of cats prior to
registration.

Desexing
Cats are able to start their reproductive lives at a very young age, and throughout their lifetime can
potentially deliver many litters of kittens. For example, it only takes 2% of our domestic (non-desexed)
cat population to replenish the entire cat population (the remaining 98%) over a period of one year.
To view it another way, just one female cat can produce through its offspring 1,048,756 cats in 10
years. 7

Desexing is promoted as one of the important first steps in responsible cat ownership. Desexing (also
referred to as spaying or neutering) is done to prevent seasonal cycles and to prevent unwanted
pregnancies.

Overpopulation and the proliferation of stray cats could be reduced if more cats were desexed at an
appropriately early age. Cats can be desexed from two months of age.

If tomcats are desexed it can help to prevent fighting and wandering and other undesirable habits such
as spraying urine to mark territory.

Victorian Government data (2005) 8 on cat ownership shows that approximately 40% of cats in Victoria
are registered and of these around 80% are desexed.




6
    Australian Companion Animal Council (ACAC), website: www.acac.org.au
7
    Victorian Responsible Pet Ownership website http://www.pets.info.vic.gov.au/community/cats_desexing.htm
8
    Victorian Bureau of Animal Welfare.


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           AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Welfare issues surrounding cats

Health and Care
All cats require adequate shelter from the elements, protection from potentially harmful situations, an
adequate and balanced daily diet and the opportunity to take exercise.

In general, the RSPCA and other animal interest organisations recommend that cats be kept indoors
from dusk to dawn. In some situations, this is mandated by law.

Basic   Cat Needs:
•       Housing – such as a box or basket and a cat door for access to outside if required.
•       Nutrition - high protein/high fat diet
•       Plentiful supply of clean fresh water
•       Scratching Poles – as cats like to keep their claws in good condition for climbing and defence.
•       Litter Trays
•       Exercise and Play opportunities
•       Grooming - regular combing and brushing of long-haired cats is essential
•       Vaccination
•       Worming
•       Flea control.

Registration/Identification of Cats
Victoria
In Victoria, the Domestic (Feral and Nuisance) Animals Act provides for cat identification and enables
local government councils to deal effectively with feral, straying and nuisance cat populations. The
legislation also addresses the fundamental cause of the production of excess numbers of nuisance dogs
and cats by promoting responsible ownership of all companion animals, for example, encouraging
owners to desex their pets.

The Act requires the registration of all cats (and dogs) over the age of 3 months of age. In Victoria only
certain types of microchips can be implanted in dogs and cats. Additionally there are set requirements
for scanners used by implanters or at pounds/shelters. The regulations restrict who can implant
permanent identification devices (microchips) in Victoria how the procedure is carried out. From 1
December 2005 any microchip registries which accept records for microchipped cats or dogs in Victoria
must be licensed with the Victorian Department of Primary Industries.

From 1 May 2007, all cats and dogs registered with a council for the first time must be microchipped
prior to registration.

Registering pets at three months of age ensures that most lost kittens and puppies can be returned to
their owners. In addition, owners receive discount registration fees if their pets are desexed. Cat and
dog registration must be renewed every year.

NSW
The NSW Companion Animals Act is designed to benefit pets, their owners and the wider community.

The permanent identification and lifetime registration system which came into effect on 1 July 1999
greatly assists authorities in returning lost and injured animals to their owners. It provides NSW councils
with a more effective means of keeping track of dogs and cats for the benefit of the wider community.

ACT Government
The ACT Domestic Animals Act requires all cats (and dogs) to be identified (by collar and tag or
microchip), and requires all cats (and dogs) over 6 months of age to be desexed. Provisions exist for cat
curfews where a proven nature conservation treat exists




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


Formal Education
The information about formal education as outlined for companion dogs is relevant for companion cats.
University degrees were outlined previously as well as the VET Animal Care and Management Training
Package. Some of the schools programs introduce education about cat ownership, but they are mainly
focussed on dogs.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Government
In Victoria and NSW, where registration of cats is required, the State Governments have a considerable
amount of education resources and materials to encourage responsible cat ownership.


Victorian Government
www.pets.info.vic.gov.au

The Victorian Responsible Pet Ownership Program in (refer to the dog section for more detail) includes
cat ownership. The website and a variety of hard copy publications provide information on:
    • Responsible cat ownership (Code of Practice for the Private Keeping of Cats)
    • Cat microchipping and registration
    • Desexing of cats
    • Keeping cats on the property
    • General cat care.

A booklet is also available on how to build cat proof fencing and cat enclosures. In addition, various
promotions and campaigns are undertaken in relation to responsible cat ownership. For instance, the
Hungry Jack’s responsible cat ownership competition, participation in the joint “Who’s for cats?” stray
cat media campaign, the Pet Registration Incentive Scheme etc. A “Cat Management Manual” has been
developed for Council use. These education activities are guided by findings from detailed research
undertaken by the Victorian Government into cat control and welfare issues.

NSW Government
http://www.dlg.nsw.gov.au/dlg/dlghome/dlg_InformationIndex.asp?areaindex=CA&index=301

The NSW Department of Local Government has a section on its website about Companion Animals
which includes cats. Topics covered are:
•     Life Time Protection for your Cat (microchippin)
•     Responsibilities of a Cat Owner

Information and Resources:
•     NSW Pounds and Shelters
•     Lost Cats
•     Benefits of owning a cat
•     Caring for cats
•     Pet Shops
•     Breeders

South Australian Dog and Cat Management Board
www.dogsncats.asn.au

The Dog and Cat Management Board of South Australia has been established under the Dog and Cat
Management Act 1995 (the Act) and is the only statutory authority of its kind in Australia. The Act
provides powers and functions for councils to manage day-to-day enforcement and administration of
the legislative provisions for the management of dogs and cats in the community.

The Act defines the legal status of cats, provides for non-compulsory identification of cats to establish
ownership and a head of power for councils to actively manage cats should they wish to do so.

Educational information on the Board’s website about cats covers:
•     The Joys Of Owning A Cat
•     Choosing Your Cat
•     Owning A Cat Is A Big Responsibility!
•     Desexing


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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


•       Identification
•       Vaccination And Worming
•       Flea Control
•       Toilet Training
•       Travelling
•       Safety
•       Toys
•       Lost And Found
•       Caring For Your Cat

Other   general info includes;
•       Caring for Pets
•       Choosing the right pet
•       Quick find your Dog or Cat
•       Registration Rebates - Information Sheet
•       Training Concessions - Information Sheet
•       Why Spay or Neuter Your Pet

Local Government
Local government councils across Australia are often the first point of call for information about owning
a cat or dog.

Many councils have educational information about pets available to give to residents that comes from
the relevant State Government agency that develops the responsible pet ownership/companion animal
ownership education program.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Industry

Australian Cat Federation Inc
www.acf.asn.au

The Australian Cat Federation Inc (formed in 1972) is an Australia-wide recommendatory body with
affiliates in all States and Territories. It promotes the welfare of all cats, the responsible breeding and
showing of the recognised breeds of cats, and the showing of desexed domestic cats.

Co-ordinating Cat Council of Australia
http://cccofa.asn.au/

The Co-ordinating Cat Council of Australia is the national council of all cat control bodies in Australia
and was established in 1979.

Governing Council of the Cat Fancy of Australia and Victoria
www.cats.org.au

The Governing Council of the Cat Fancy was first established in 1928 and it now has 13 affiliated cat
clubs. It promotes the welfare and registration of cats for showing.

Petalia
http://www.petalia.com.au/cats/

The Petalia website contains educational information about cat ownership.

Petnet
www.petnet.com.au
www.i-pet.com.au

The Petcare Information and Advisory Service Australia Pty Ltd (PIAS) websites petnet.com.au and
i-pet.com.au have information about having a cat as a pet.


Cat World
http://www.cat-world.com.au/

Cat World is a comprehensive website for cat owners. As well as Cat Care and Cat Health information,
it includes a section on Cat Clubs, Cat Breeders and Boarding/Pet Sitters.

Feline Control Council of Victoria
http://www.hotkey.net.au/~fccvic/

The Feline Control Council of Victoria Inc was founded in 1962 to promote in every way the welfare of
cats, the general improvement of the standard, breeding and exhibition of cats, plus good
sportsmanship among its members. It is the largest feline registration council in Victoria with
approximately 900 members.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



NSW Cat Fanciers Association
www.nswcfa.asn.au/

The NSW Cat Fanciers Association is the largest and most active feline registering body in the Southern
Hemisphere with in excess of 40 affiliated clubs and kindred societies, which conduct 45 shows each
year under the Rules and Regulations of the NSW CFA. In excess of 3,000 individual registrations are
processed by the NSW CFA each year.

Cat Control Council of Tasmania
www.ccctas.com.au

The Cat Control Council of Tasmania is a breeders’ registration body.

Cat Association of Tasmania
www.catinc.org.au/index.htm

The Cat Association of Tasmania aims to promote “in every way the general improvement of the
standard, exhibition and welfare of cats”.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Animal Interest Organisations

RSPCA
www.rspcavic.org/campaigns_news/campaigns_cat_desexing.htm

The RSPCA has a major campaign to encourage desexing of cats to reduce the number of cats that are
euthanased every year. For example, according to the RSPCA Victoria website, every year animal
shelters in Victoria euthanase 38,000 healthy cats for whom homes cannot be found. The RSPCA
maintains that in spite of numerous responsible pet ownership education programs, desexing voucher
schemes and differential registration charges, the number of cats euthanased increases every year.

The RSPCA has campaigned for many years for compulsory desexing of cats. Cat over-population is not
just an issue for animal shelters - it is a community responsibility. There is a significant financial cost to
society for managing excess cats (running shelters, euthanasia, stress on shelter workers, cat trapping
exercises and answering complaint calls).

Note: Please refer to the RSPCA entries (RPSCA Australia and the state bodies) under Dogs for
extensive information about the organisation’s education programs and resources for companion
animals in general.

Animal Welfare League Queensland
www.awlq.com.au

AWL Qld runs a desexing campaign to Prevent Homeless Animals. Vet clinics across the Gold Coast join
the AWL Qld Desexing Campaign in August to prevent thousands of homeless animals. They offer prices
up to 30-50% lower than commonly charged fees around Australia to encourage pet owners to desex
their pets in August before the spring breeding season.


Animal Welfare League NSW
www.animalwelfareleague.com.au

Animal Welfare League NSW (AWL) is Australia’s second largest animal welfare charity comprising of
two animal shelters and 14 branches of volunteers in NSW. AWL NSW offers subsidised desexing
programs to assist those members of the community who need help with the costs of desexing their
pets.

Cat Crisis Coalition
www.catcrisis.com

The CAT CRISIS COALITION is a unique alliance of leading Victorian animal welfare groups united
through our commitment to urgently address the current cat crisis and improve the welfare of cats.

All major Victorian shelters have joined together with the sole aim of achieving mandatory desexing of
cats, in order to reduce cat overpopulation and stop the heartbreaking destruction of so many cats each
year.

Member organisations include Australian Animal Protection Society, Blue Cross, Cat Protection Society of
Victoria, Geelong Animal Welfare Society, Humane Society for Animal Welfare, Lort Smith Animal
Hospital, Mirboo North and District Animal Aid, RSPCA Victoria, Save A Dog Scheme, South Gippsland
Animal Aid, The Lost Dogs' Home And Western Suburbs Cat Shelter and The Victorian Animal Aid.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Cat Protection Society of NSW
www.catprotection.org.au

The Cat Protection Society of NSW (CPS) was founded in 1958 by a group of cat lovers concerned with
the plight of homeless street cats. The Society began a program of low cost desexing to reduce the
number of kittens and therefore, the number of cats and kittens abandoned. Today, the Cat Protection
Society is a charitable association with modern premises in Newtown in Sydney. Facilities include an
adoption centre, welfare services, information and products to keep your cat happy and healthy.

The CPS has cats for adoption and information on its website about cat care covering: responsible cat
ownership, desexing, microchipping and registration and frequently asked questions.

The CPS has a link to the Victorian Government’s DIY guide, How to Build Cat Proof Fencing and Cat
Enclosures.

Cat Protection Society of Victoria
www.catprotection.com.au

The Cat Protection Society of Victoria has been helping stray, wild and unwanted cats and kittens since
1947. It is the largest cat welfare organisation in Australia. The Society receives some 15,000 cats and
kittens annually and it successfully rehouses approximately 4000 of them.

The Society's hostel is located in the north-eastern Melbourne suburb of Greensborough and has the
facilities to house 300 cats and kittens at any one time. The Society's staff have expertise in all feline
welfare issues and the Society is recognised for its expertise in all aspects of cat care and management
- from veterinary matters to the issues of stray cat management.

The Society has an active fostering system that extends our ability to care for very young kittens and
adults that require special attention. Some 1,000 cats and kittens are saved and rehoused through this
scheme every year.

Cat Welfare Society (WA)

The Cat Welfare Society in Western Australia runs Cat Haven, a cat shelter, and promotes community
awareness of cat welfare issues. Its mission is to enhance cat welfare by caring for cats in need and
assisting people to live in harmony with cats.

The Cat Haven shelter is located in the Perth suburb of Shenton Park. The shelter has been running for
more than 45 years and promotes sterilisation. Currently around 6000 cat are euthanased annually just
by Cat Haven.




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           AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Companion animals – Captive Birds

Introduction
Birds are a popular pet and as other animals have welfare requirements that owners have to meet

Some states have Codes of Practices for the keeping of caged birds, which are a good starting point for
people interested in keeping birds in captivity. For example in Victoria, there is a Code of Practice for
the housing of caged birds, which defines the minimum standards of accommodation, management and
care that are appropriate to the various species of cage birds.

Many animal interest organisations are against the keeping of wild birds.


Welfare of captive birds
Captive birds have certain basic welfare requirements 9 :
•     accommodation designed to suit their physical characteristics and behaviour;
•     space enough to fly, roost and elude other cage birds;
•     protection from the weather with shelter and comfortable conditions of temperature, ventilation
      and lighting;
•     protection from the menace of predators;
•     feed and water to provide essential nutrients;
•     protection from disease;
•     regular surveillance to enable early detection of problems.

Informal Education - Industry

Petalia
http://www.petalia.com.au/birds/

The Petalia website contains information about keeping birds as pets.

Petnet
www.petnet.com.au
www.i-pet.com.au

The Petcare Information and Advisory Service Australia Pty Ltd (PIAS) websites petnet.com.au and
i-pet.com.au have information about keeping and caring for captive birds.

Bird Health
http://www.birdhealth.com.au/index.html

An understanding and knowledge of the requirements of birds in the wild is the basis of Dr. Rob
Marshall’s approach to bird health. He has developed specialized health programs and health products
that protect and enhance the health of all bird types in a purely natural way.

There are programs for pet birds, parrot or finch aviaries, pigeons of all kinds, ornamental aviaries,
specialist finch or parrot breeders, show canaries, backyard poultry, exhibition budgerigars, scientific
research institutions, pet shops and specialized bird shops.
There is a lot of information on the website about caring for many different types of birds.




9
    from the Victorian Code of Practice for the housing of caged birds.


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Avicultural Society of Australia
www.birds.org.au

The Avicultural Society of Australia supports its members in the breeding and conservation of aviary
held birds. It has nearly 2000 members throughout Australia and overseas. Monthly meetings are held
in Melbourne and at various country branches within the state of Victoria.

Every member receives the monthly journal Australian Aviculture. It contains a comprehensive range of
articles of interest to aviculturists written by both Australian and international aviculturists and
veterinarians.

The Society and its branches
•     run seminars and workshops for beginners in aviculture
•     generate a range of other activities that encourage, support and educate aviculturists
•     hold annual bird sales
•     organise aviary visits
•     provide a range of avian items for purchase at extremely competitive prices
•     facilitate the meeting of private buyers and sellers of birds
•     provide a library of bird videos and books for members to borrow at no charge.


Avicultural Society of South Australia
www.birdkeepinginaustralia.com

The Avicultural Society of South Australia Inc, formed in 1928, has the distinction of being the oldest
Society of its type in Australia and the third longest established Avicultural Society in the English
speaking world.

The Society publishes a monthly Newsletter and a quarterly Journal, both of which provide Subscription
Members with a wide variety of interesting and informative articles on the keeping and breeding of
birds in captivity.


The Avicultural Society of SA Inc. has the following objectives:
•     The study of native and foreign birds.
•     The conservation of native birds in freedom and the establishment of viable breeding populations
      of all suitable birds in captivity, especially rare and endangered species.
•     The promotion of the hygienic keeping and scientific feeding and breeding of birds in captivity in
      the best and most natural conditions.
•     The arranging of lectures by visiting and local aviculturists and naturalists on matters relating to
      native and foreign birds.
•     The dissemination of avicultural information by all methods.
•     The cultivation of affiliations and friendly relations with societies and clubs with similar objectives,
      in any part of the world.


Australian National Cockatiel Society Inc
www.cockatielsociety.org.au

The Australian National Cockatiel Society Inc is a club that endeavours to support and encourage
anyone interested in aviculture, in particular the keeping and or breeding of the Cockatiel.

There is a large range of information and education articles on its website, including health care.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Informal Education – Animal Interest Organisations

RSPCA
www.rspca.org.au

The RSPCA has educational information about keeping birds as pets.


People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)
www.peta.org

PETA has a website specifically focusing on companion animals.
www.helpinganimals.com

The website contains a fact sheet on:
Caged Birds - http://www.helpinganimals.com/animalsHome_birds.asp

The information contained in this fact sheet is also on the main PETA website.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Companion animals – Rabbits, Ferrets, Guinea Pigs

Introduction
There is not a lot of education about companion animals such as pet rabbits, ferrets and guinea pigs.
Organisations like the RSPCA provide some educational information and resources about these species.
Refer to the Dogs section for information about education providers which may be relevant to these
species. Below is some preliminary information about informal education.

Note: In Queensland it is an offence to keep a rabbit as a pet, as all rabbits are declared a pest animal
under legislation.


Informal Education

Petalia
www.petalia.com.au

The Petalia website contains information about keeping rabbits as a pet.

Petnet
www.petnet.com.au
www.i-pet.com.au

The Petcare Information and Advisory Service Australia Pty Ltd (PIAS) websites petnet.com.au and
i-pet.com.au have information about keeping rabbits as a pet.

Australian Companion Rabbit Society
www.rabbit.org.au

The Australian Companion Rabbit Society believes that rabbits make great house pets, and it aims to
provide information for pet rabbit caretakers, and anyone considering sharing life with a rabbit. There
is a lot of information on the website about caring for a pet rabbit.

RSPCA

The RSPCA has educational information about keeping rabbits and guinea pigs as pets:
•    Rabbits - www.rspca.org.au/animal/petcare_rabbit.asp
•    Guinea Pigs - www.rspca.org.au/animal/petcare_gpig.asp


People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)
www.peta.org

PETA has a website specifically focusing on companion animals.
www.helpinganimals.com/animalsHome.asp

The website contains fact sheets on:
•    Rabbits – www.helpinganimals.com/animalsHome_rabbits.asp
•    Guinea Pigs – www.helpinganimals.com/factsheet/files/FactsheetDisplay.asp?ID=8
•    Ferrets - www.helpinganimals.com/animalsHome_ferrets.asp

The information contained in these fact sheets are also on the main PETA website.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


Companion animals – Mice and Rats

Introduction
There is limited education about keeping mice and rats and pets as companion animals.


Informal Education

Petalia
www.petalia.com.au

The Petalia website contains information about keeping rodents as a pet.


People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)
www.peta.org

PETA has a number of relevant fact sheets on its website:




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008



Companion animals – Fish
For information about education and training regarding fish companion animals please see the AAWS
Aquatic Animal sector Education and Training Stocktake.




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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


Appendix 1 – Animal Care and Management Training Package

There are 108 competencies in the RUV04 Training Package (also known as the Veterinary Nursing
Package). Competencies related specifically to the welfare of companion animals are:

RUV1101A          Prepare for animal care work
RUV1102A          Support animal care work
RUV1103A          Support animal care cleaning activities
RUV1104A          Maintain the animal care workplace
RUV2101A          Work in the animal care industry
RUV2103A          Assist with general animal care
RUV2104A          Provide food and water for animals
RUV2106A          Assist with food preparation
RUV2107A          Provide basic first aid for animals
RUV2108A          Rescue animals and apply basic animal care
RUV2602A          Carry out daily clinic routines
RUV2603A          Assist with surgery preparations
RUV3301A          Carry out institution containment and exclusion procedures
RUV3303A          Monitor and maintain animal health and wellbeing
RUV3305A          Carry out simple breeding procedures
RUV3307A          Prepare for and monitor anaesthesia in animals
RUV3402A          Work within a captive animal institution
RUV3405A          Develop an institutional husbandry manual
RUV3406A          Prepare and maintain animal housing
RUV3408A          Prepare animal diets and monitor feeding
RUV3409A          Monitor and maintain animal health
RUV3410A          Capture, restrain and assist in moving animals
RUV3411A          Care for young animals
RUV3412A          Monitor animal reproduction
RUV3413A          Condition animals
RUV3414A          Identify behavioural needs and implement improved husbandry
RUV3501A          Provide advice on companion animal selection and general care
RUV3502A          Provide advice on selection and care of aquatic animals
RUV3503A          Work effectively in the companion animal industry
RUV3504A          Monitor and maintain health of companion animals
RUV3505A          Provide enrichment for companion animals
RUV3506A          Capture, handle and transport companion animals
RUV3507A          Carry out companion animal breeding procedures
RUV3508A          Prepare companion animal diets and monitor feeding
RUV4201A          Comply with animal control and regulation requirements
RUV4202A          Assess and impound animals
RUV4203A          Identify and respond to animal behaviour
RUV4205A          Euthanase sick, injured or unwanted pound animals
RUV4206A          Carry out pound procedures
RUV4208A          Coordinate seizure of animals
RUV4402A          Implement collection management
RUV4404A          Develop animal diets
RUV4406A          Develop, monitor and review behavioural management strategies
RUV4501A          Manage compliance in the companion animal industry
RUV4502A          Hand-rear companion animals
RUV4503A          Develop diets for companion animals
RUV4504A          Manage and maintain aviaries and bird rooms
RUV4506A          Develop enrichment strategies for companion animals
RUV4507A          Purchase companion animal livestock
RUV4508A          Manage companion animal breeding
RUV4509A          Provide professional companion animal grooming services
RUV4510A          Provide companion animal hydro-bathing services



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          AAWS Education and Training Stocktake Companion Animals FINAL REPORT – 1 February 2008


RUV4511A          Provide training advice to companion animal owners
RUV4512A          Conduct companion animal training classes
RUV4602A          Apply radiographic routines
RUV4603A          Perform clinic pathology procedures
RUV4605A          Carry out surgical nursing routines
RUV4606A          Nurse animals
RUV4607A          Carry out medical nursing routines
RUV4608A          Coordinate and perform theatre routines
RUV4609A          Provide specific animal care advice
RUV4610A          Carry out veterinary dental nursing procedures
RUV5301A          Carry out breeding procedures
RUV5601A          Manage nursing requirements for specialised surgical procedures
RUV5602A          Carry out post-operative nursing routines
RUV5603A          Produce veterinary dental oral cavity radiographs
RUV5604A          Provide veterinary dental nursing support for advanced veterinary dental surgery
RUV5606A          Perform emergency procedures to sustain life
RUV5607A          Provide nursing support for critical care surgery




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