Three new cat behaviour courses launched
International Cat Care already provides a range of distance education initiatives aimed at the veterinary profession. It claims that its new courses – ranging from a two-month short course to an 18-month online tutor-led course – fill the gap for cat professionals and cat owners eager to learn more about cat behaviour.
Enrolment has already opened for ‘Getting to Know your Cat: an Introduction to Feline Behaviour’ – a six-month online course aimed at all cat owners and enthusiasts. It is made up of five modules that look at many aspects of feline behaviour including:
- the impact of domestication
- understanding the behaviour of free-ranging cats and pet cats
- how cats communicate and use their senses
- understanding feline emotions and how they allow us to assess a cat’s welfare
- what are a cat’s environmental needs and how can we best provide them
- understanding why behaviours might become problems for their owners and first aid interventions for these behaviours.
‘Cat Friendly Introductions: Cats, Dogs and Babies’ is scheduled for launch at the end of the year. According to the charity, this second course is the perfect follow-on to ‘Getting to Know your Cat: an Introduction to Feline Behaviour’ or can be studied as a stand-alone project. Again, aimed at cat owners and enthusiasts, this course provides the learner with the knowledge to assess whether their home and current cat is likely to accept another cat and how best to choose a new feline addition.
It also provides step-by-step advice on how to best introduce cats to other cats, dogs and babies to maximise the chance of a positive relationship in the future. This course is a two-month, short online programme during which students work through the course materials at their own pace. There is a short assessment at the end of each module and on successful completion of the course, students will receive a certificate.
To complement the current behaviour course available to veterinary professionals, ‘Advanced Feline Behaviour for Cat Professionals’ is a course aimed at providing the same high level of knowledge to those working with cats in a range of parallel capacities – such as rehoming centres, groomers, boarding catteries and cat sitters. This is an 18-month, online, tutor-led course that allows for inter-peer and tutor discussion.
Learners work through the modules remotely allowing them flexible study times around their working lives. This course covers the same elements as ‘Getting to Know your Cat: an Introduction to Feline Behaviour’ but in greater depth. There is also additional focus on behavioural development in kittens and the impact of their early experiences on behaviour; as well as how cats learn and how we can use this to improve the welfare of cats.
This course is modular and students work to deadlines to complete assessments that are marked externally by feline behaviour experts. On completion, students will receive a certificate. Enrolment is open for this course, with a start date of March 2020.