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New TAFE NSW course helps students tap into booming pet industry


New TAFE NSW course helps students tap into booming pet industry

TAFE NSW animal studies graduate Emma Bubb says TAFE NSW gave her a running start to her career.

12 October 2021

A unique course aimed at helping students tap into the COVID-19 induced jobs boom in the pet industry is being offered for the first time at TAFE NSW Yallah, Moss Vale and Primary Industries Centre.

Starting next month, the Statement of Attainment in Introduction to Working in the Pet Industry will give students the hands-on practical skills to launch a career in an industry that is enjoying surging growth due to an explosion in pet ownership from locked down residents.

According to Animal Medicines Australia, there has been a substantial boom in pet ownership, with an estimated 30.4 million pets across the country. Nationally, 69% of households now own a pet, up from 61% only two years ago. While throughout the pandemic, 37% of pet owners reported experiencing difficulty accessing things like pet food, treats and, veterinary and pet services.

TAFE NSW Head Teacher of Animal Science and Agriculture Jenny O’Donnell, a practicing veterinarian, said the new course offered students a gateway to careers in pet shops, pet shelters, vet nursing, pet grooming or working with exotic captive animals.

“COVID has really accelerated the popularity of pets and the industry is expanding massively at the moment,” Ms O’Donnell said.

“With that comes an unprecedented number of employment opportunities and this TAFE NSW course will give students a running start into the industry.”

The JobTrainer-funded course includes a blend of face-to-face and online learning and, includes units in working in the animal care industry, and feeding and watering animals.

The units offer credits towards a Certificate II in Animal Studies, which is a pre-requisite to enrolling in a Certificate III in Captive Animals or a Certificate IV in Vet Nursing.

The course will commence at TAFE NSW Primary Industries Centre on 26 October, TAFE NSW Yallah on 11 November and TAFE NSW Moss Vale on 5 November.

Emma Bubb, 30, is one of many TAFE NSW animal studies graduates to secure work during the COVID-19 pet boom.

A former supermarket manager, Ms Bubb’s career path took a dramatic turn when she rescued a dog and was so moved by the experience, decided to forge a career in domestic animals.

She completed a Certificate II in Animal Studies at TAFE NSW this year and is now a dog trainer at Walkie’s Dog Training Academy, with plans to return to TAFE NSW to become a vet nurse.

“I want to make a difference in the lives of animals and TAFE NSW has enabled me to do that,” Ms Bubb said. “TAFE NSW was an amazing experience and the phone lines and emails are always open to teachers. Even after I graduated, they kept in touch and let me know about job opportunities.”

If you’d like to enroll in an animal studies course at TAFE NSW, call 13 16 01 or visit

Media contact: Daniel Johns, TAFE NSW Communications Specialist, (02) 6938 1441, mobile 0477 722 428