Skip to main content
Menu Menu

ACM20121 Certificate II in Animal Care

National ID: ACM20121 State ID: BGQ7
Share this course on your social media page

Do you have a passion for pooches, a calling to work with cats or even a fascination with fish? If you love animals and dream of a career in animal care, this course will give you a formal qualification to enter the industry.

Be guided by our team of skilled lecturers who have a wealth of experience in the field, pairing clinical expertise with the drive to provide the highest standard of care to animals to keep them safe, clean, well and content. Learn the foundations of general care of dogs, cats, fish, rodents, rabbits, mammals and invertebrates. Build your knowledge on how to safely handle animals, daily routines such as bathing and drying, assisting with health routines and providing reception services for an animal care facility.

You can gain job ready skills to work as an animal attendant in a kennel, cattery, groomers, vet clinic, local pet shop or even a welfare organisation/animal shelter for abandoned, neglected or injured animals that are in need of care.

90% of surveyed students were highly satisfied with this course.

Study in specialist facilities

SM TAFE is the only TAFE to offer a live veterinary clinic based at our Bentley campus which is open to the general public, staff and students to make bookings for consults and surgeries. Students can gain on-the-job skills in animal care with a range of species including dogs, rabbits, rats, guinea pigs, lizards, fish, along with an aviary housing various birdlife. The clinic allows development of skills in a safe and supported environment.

Our Murdoch campus has a dedicated dog day-care training facility and pet grooming clinic where students can develop hands-on animal care skills in a real-world setting. Mandurah campus also has a modified version of a dog day-care, which represents a short-stay facility for dogs.


  • Provide care and maintenance to a range of animals
  • Learn daily practice routines for animals including bathing
  • Techniques to safely handle animals
  • Assist with animal health routines
  • Provide reception services for an animal care facility
  • Workplace health and safety
School Leaver Non-School Leaver AQF
OLNA or NAPLAN 9 Band 8 C Grades in Year 10 English and Maths or equivalent Certificate I or Certificate II

This course is available as a traineeship.

Entrance requirements for traineeships

You must be employed in a training contract by an appropriate organisation to study an apprenticeship or traineeship. 

In a traineeship you also gain hands-on skills and work experience, and improve your employment prospects, while earning a wage. On successful completion you will gain a nationally recognised qualification which can lead to rewarding career options. The difference between a traineeship and an apprenticeship is that a traineeship can be either a full time or part time employment based training arrangement, usually for a nominal duration of 12 months or more, generally in a non-trade related area. 

To find out how to arrange a traineeship and study at South Metropolitan TAFE, please contact the Jobs and Skills Centre closest to you.

Attendance in class

You will be expected to attend campus 2 days per week for one semester.

At-home study

As well as the in-class component, you will need to complete approximately 10-15 hours of additional study each week outside of class hours, including private study, assignment preparation, and research.

You will need to have the basic technical requirements for at-home study. If you don’t have access to a computer and WiFi at home, we recommend using our library computers during library hours.

Work placement

Work placement is not a requirement for this course.

What you need for your first day of class

On your first day you should bring your SM TAFE confirmation enrolment receipt, your student ID, stationery (pen, pencil, exercise book, eraser, ruler and calculator) and wear enclosed non-slip footwear.

In addition, the following uniform is required to be worn at all practical classes, while on visits and handling animals:

  • non-slip flat shoes or boots
  • knee length shorts or full length pants
  • Campus required uniform top

Bentley students are required to purchase scrub shirts (scrub pants are optional, but advised if you wish to purchase through Veterinary Nursing). These can be ordered at orientation or within the first few weeks of class at an approximate cost of $41 (subject to change).

Murdoch and Peel students are required to purchase a polo shirt, the cost of this ranges from $28-33 (subject to change). Try-on days are organised in your first few weeks of class. Payment is required in cash to the supplier at the time of ordering.

Please note this list should be used as a guide only as job titles and qualification requirements may vary between organisations.

To access free career planning and job search assistance, visit the Jobs and Skills Centres page.

Select your preferred campus and apply

Click on your preferred campus and study mode below to get started with your application. 

Semester 1, 2024

Duration 1 Semester
When Semester 1, 2024
Where Murdoch
How On Campus
Duration 1 Semester
When Semester 1, 2024
Where Bentley
How On Campus

Semester 2, 2023

Duration 1 Semester
When Semester 2, 2023
Where Murdoch
How On Campus
Duration 1 Semester
When Semester 2, 2023
Where Bentley
How On Campus

All year round

When All year round
How Traineeship

Indicative fees and charges 

The fees quoted are estimates only and are for all units in the course for students enrolling on a full-time basis. If you're a student that has successfully completed a lower-level qualification that is a prerequisite for this course, you'll only pay for the units that you need to enrol in to complete this course. Please view the full list of fee disclaimers. 

Get help