Natural Health Care for Animals

Course CodeBAG218
Fee CodeS3
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment


  • Do you want to learn more about treating animals naturally?
  • Do you want to learn the principles of natural animal health?
  • Study the holistic treatment of diseases in animals.
  • Understand the principles of herbal treatments, naturopathy, homeopathy and tactile therapy
  • Understand the limitations of natural animal health care
  • Look at managing and maintaining health in animals
  • Improve your job and career prospects
  • Study this 100 hour course in your own home
  • Learn more about natural animal health care with our friendly, expert tutors.
The Natural Animal Health Care course is recognised by the Complementary Medical Association.
Who is this course suitable for?   This is a great course for anyone working and living with animals -
  • pet owners
  • kennel staff
  • voluntary staff
  • rescue staff
  • veterinary assistants
  • pet shop workers
  • animal-related journalists

Lesson Structure

There are 8 lessons in this course:

  1. Introduction to Natural Animal Health Care
    • Limitations of Conventional Medicine
    • Holistic Treatments
    • Homeopathy
    • Flower Essences
    • Naturopathy
    • Natural Nutrition
    • Tactile Therapy (Massage, Equine Tactile Therapy, Bowen Therapy, Canine Myofunctional Therapy, Physiotherapy, Shiatsu, Reflexology, Osteopathy, Chiropractic, Acapuncture, Microcurrent, Microwave Therapies, Ayurvedic Medicine, Traditional Chinese Medicine)
    • Benefits of Natural Health Care
    • Codes of Practice for Animal Welfare
    • Health & Safety in Veterinary Practice (Separating Animals, Infectious Diseases, Containing Disease, Disposal of Dead/Infected Tissues, Dangerous non-Animal Wastes, Storage & Handling of Supplements/Equipment).
  2. Signs of Ill Health
    • Normal Vital Signs
    • Recognising ill health
    • Disease Diagnosis
    • Homeopathic Remedies
    • Signs of Shock
    • Signs of Internal Bleeding
    • Signs of Poisoning
    • First Aid
  3. Natural Nutrition for Animals
    • The effect of Modern Living on Domestic Animals
    • Processed Pet Foods
    • Affect of Poor Nutrition on Animal Behaviour
    • Good Nutrition for Domesticated Animals (Carbohydrates, Proten, Fats/Lipids, Minerals, Vitamins, Supplements, Recipes)
    • Nutritional Problems in Animals (Allergies, Dermatitis, Overweight, Underweight, Liver Disease)
    • Livestock Mineral supplements for farm animals, Nutritional Supplements
  4. Holistic Health Care - Maintaining Health
    • Creating a Healthy Environment (Domestic pets, Livestock)
    • Health Maintenance
    • Preventing Arthritis in Dogs
    • The Vaccination Debate
    • Pet Dental Care
    • Flea Control
    • Disease Prevention in Livestock
    • Preventing Disease in Poultry
    • Avian Influenza
  5. Holistic Health Care - Treating Health Problems
    • Naturopathic Treatment
    • Homeopathic Treatment
    • Herbalism
    • Treating Common Ailments (Arthritis, Skin Problems, Digestive Complaints, Diabetes, Dental Problems )
    • Pain Management
    • Identifying Pain
    • Pain Relief Medication
    • Herbal Treatments
    • Homeopathy
    • Flower Essences
    • Physical Therapy
    • Equine Tactile Therapy
    • Bowen Therapy
    • Canine Myofunctional Therapy
    • Behavioural Problems (Dogs-excessive barking, digging, aggression, phobias; Cats; urine spraying, scratching furniture, aggression)
    • Birds
  6. Animal Diseases & Health Problems (Domestic Animals)
    • Dogs; Distemper, Heartworm, Parvo virus, Hydatid Disease
    • Cats; Ringworm, Feline Aids - Feline Immunodeficiency Virus, Hairballs, Feline Herpes Virus or Cat Flu;
    • Rodents; Respiratory problems and Mycoplasma, Abscesses
    • Reptiles; Mouth Rot or Canker (Stomatitis); cyto parasites (Mites), Pneumonia,
    • Fish
    • Cage Birds, etc
  7. Animal Diseases & Health Problems (Livestock)
    • Notifiable Diseases
    • Control of Internal Parasites, Horses (Tetanus, Lock Jaw, Strangles, Parasites, Colic, Equine Influenza)
    • Cattle (Parasites, Mastitis)
    • Pigs (Exudative Epidermitis of pigs (Greasy Pig), Leptospirosis, Parasites)
    • Sheep (Enterotoxemia (Pulpy Kidney), Cutaneous Myiasis (Blow Fly strike))
    • Poultry (Newcastle Disease (NCD), Yolk Sac Infection, Infectious Bronchitis (IB))
  8. Animal Health Care Case Study Research Project
    • Evaluate symptoms of ill-health displayed by an animal, determine the problem and decide on a natural course of treatment for the specific health problem suffered by the animal.
    • Develop a management plan that the owner of the animal can undertake to help treat the problem and relieve associated pain and discomfort.


  • Explain the principles and benefits of natural animal health care
  • Recognise common signs of ill health in different animals
  • Explain the principles of natural nutrition for animals.
  • Describe requirements for preventative health care in animals.
  • Recognise common diseases, health problems and natural treatments for those problems in domestic animals
  • Develop an understanding of natural treatments for health problems in animals
  • Recognise some common diseases, health problems and natural treatments for those problems in livestock.
  • Develop a natural treatment plan for a specific health problem of an animal

ACS Student comment: I would recommend this course to anybody who is interested in animals, has animals and/or likes to work with animals. This is something I can use for the rest of my life and I can also use this basic knowledge for further study. The course is very pleasant and the tutors are motivating and very fast. So all in all a great learning experience!Gabriele Klinnert, Australia - Natural Health Care for Animals course.
TIPS for Maintaining Domesticated Animals
Disease is one of the greatest risks of livestock or pet health. The risk of disease should be minimised so as to avoid costly treatment and/or potentially having to euthenase infected animals.
Preventing disease
The main source of many diseases and parasites are the individual animals themselves. Animals that may have been infected by a disease when young might still carry the disease later in life. These diseases can then be transmitted to younger animals that come into contact with these older animals.  Vermin or wild animals can also introduce diseases to a domesticated animal. However, steps can be taken to reduce the chance of disease spreading through a herd or flock.
Housing or shelter
Areas and buildings where animals are grouped together for protection are one of the most likely places for diseases to be transmitted. The risk of disease being spread in these areas can be minimised in housing by taking certain steps which include:
  • Provide good ventilation in permanent housing with adequate spacing between animals - This prevents the temperature rising to a point which may cause heat stress to the animals and also reduces the likelihood of respiratory diseases spreading between the animals.
  • Keep permanent housing free of faecal contamination – Faecal build-up is a potential source of pathogenic build-up and attracts flies to the shelter. Regularly clean floors with disinfectant. Ensure that flooring and walls are free of cracks. Place food and water away from where they may be contaminated by faecal matter.
  • Temporary housing should be treated in the same manner.  Animals should be provided with adequate space in clean housing.  It is beneficial to rotate the holding areas regularly.
General hygiene
Ensure that all equipment used with animals are kept clean and disinfected. If you do not wish to use disinfectant it is paramount that equipment is kept clean and free from organic contaminants.  Leashes, harnesses and other equipment should be checked regularly to ensure that they fit correctly and are not causing stress to the animal.  
If owners are administering drugs to animals themselves, they need to ensure that all equipment (eg. containers, syringes and needles) are kept sterile. Contaminated equipment can pass pathogens from one animal to the next. 
Unhealthy animals can require grooming to ensure they are kept clean. If this is not done, they may become infested with ectoparasites such as ticks or mites.  Skin which is soiled by faeces can also attract flies leading to risk of myiasis (fly-strike). Wound care is also important in maintaining health.  Small cuts and wounds should heal themselves as long as they are kept clean.  Those which become septic may require antibiotics.
It is important for farmers to be aware of seasonal arthropod infestations and how these should be managed. Owners should also gain knowledge of poisonous or noxious plants in the region.  Animals introduced to a new locations might not avoid poisonous plants, so you should restrict their exposure to new places each day to reduce the chance of poisoning. There is also a danger to grazing animals when pastures are overgrazed and the deeper-rooted noxious plants are the only ones available for grazing.  Farmers should provide adequate fodder in different areas.  This also avoids congregation around one feed source which can increase the risk of disease being spread.
Preventing Disease in Poultry
As with other livestock, poultry require the basics of hygiene, good nutrition and reduced stress to work at their optimum level. 
Important factors which poultry farmers should keep in mind are:
  • Make sure birds are not exposed to draughts, chilling or overheating.
  • Make sure the ventilation is sufficient and working.  Have a back-up in case of failure.
  • Avoid overcrowding birds.
  • Provide enough litter to soak up moisture from urine and faeces and to insulate the birds from changes in temperature.  Clean the litter regularly to prevent infections building up.
  • Provide enough nest boxes for layers and keep them clean.  Wood shavings that are regularly changed are the best.
  • If you provide lighting for layers, make sure it is at the correct intensity and length.
  • Ensure poultry are provided with clean water at all times - an empty drinker can cause death in a short time from kidney failure and dehydration.
  • Provide the correct type and amount of feed.
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