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Online Courses for Animal Care Students

Online animal care courses are aimed at students interested in joining the animal care industry or individuals interested in expanding their knowledge of animals and animal care. Courses cover topics such as veterinary medical terminology, diseases, emergency treatment and more.

Online Animal Care Courses

The descriptions below detail some commonly offered online courses for animal care students.

  • Veterinary Medical Terminology Course: This course is aimed at students interested in learning more about the animal care industry. Students learn veterinary medical terminology and its correct usage, specifically the anatomical vocabulary. Focus is on the medical prefixes and suffixes used with medical terminology of small, large, and even exotic animals.
  • Anatomy and Physiology of Small Animals Course: The small animal anatomy and physiology course provides students with a basic understanding of animal structure and function. The course starts with the cells and covers the entire body system, demonstrating how the body parts work in keeping the animal healthy and alive. Correct anatomical terminology is emphasized in this course.
  • Skeletal and Muscular Systems of Animals Course: This course covers both the physiology and anatomy of animals, including the structure and function of the skeletal system, muscular system, skeletal muscles and joints. Students will know the function of each body part in relation to the animal's overall health.
  • Circulatory, Respiratory and Integumentary Systems Course: This course teaches students about the processes and structure of an animal's body. Focus is on the cardiovascular, respiratory, and lymphatic and integumentary systems. The integumentary system includes the skin and everything that's connected to it, including scales, hair, claws or feathers, which cushion and protect the animal. The knowledge gained in this course helps students diagnose and treat animal health issues more quickly.
  • Veterinary Pharmacology Course: This course will introduce students to different types of medication and their effects. Students will learn methods for administering medications to animals, as well as appropriate dosages and legal protocol for writing and dispensing prescriptions.
  • Pharmacy Procedures Course: This course teaches students the basic pharmacy concepts and procedures used in veterinary practice. Concepts covered include safe handling of drugs and other chemicals, proper drug dosage and dispensing, basic record keeping, inventory control, drug labeling, reading and understanding prescriptions and drug regulations related to veterinary practice.
  • Anesthesia Course: Designed for vet techs working in animal hospitals, this course covers the basic principles of anesthesia and the delivery of anesthetics. It focuses on preparing the animal for anesthesia, the use of pre-anesthetics, agents used to introduce anesthetics to the animal, general anesthesia and the physiological impacts of anesthesia on the animal body.

Program Information

Animal care courses are offered at many vocational schools and colleges as part of their distance learning programs. Although many courses can be completed fully online, some degree-earning courses require hands-on learning experience, such as an internship with a licensed veterinarian or animal specialist. While some online animal care courses may be taken as individual courses, most are part of a certificate or degree program.

Students enrolled in these courses may earn animal care certificates, animal-specific (dog, cat, etc.) certificates, or degrees, such as an associate degree in veterinary technology. Graduates may find career opportunities in animal hospitals, animal shelters, veterinary clinics and other animal facilities.

Students interested in careers in the veterinary field can find online courses in animal care at vocational schools as well as colleges and universities, as part of certificate or degree programs. Coursework can be found in such areas as the basics of animal anatomy including muscular, circulatory, and skeletal systems, pharmacology and pharmacy, and animal anesthesia.


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