COAPE - Centre of Applied Ethology

Qualification Number: 601/2491/X

Qualification Title: Certa Level 3 Award in Canine and Feline Behaviour Management in Veterinary Nursing (RQF Level 3)


VNB1: Award in Canine and Feline Behaviour Management in Veterinary Nursing (RQF)


A course for qualified veterinary nurses and others working within the veterinary profession wanting to further their knowledge and understanding of the importance of behaviour canine and feline health and disease.


Certa RQF-Listed Regulated Qualification

Level 3, Credits: 12

Comparable in Level to A Level, but different in content and smaller in size. Click HERE for more information.



The Award in Canine and Feline Behaviour Management in Veterinary Nursing (VNB1) has been structured to allow you as much flexibility as possible so that you can fit your studies around other family and work commitments. We run it twice a year, February and September, and the duration of each run is 9 months. It is Ofqual-Regulated at Level 3 with a credit value of 12 Credits and listed in the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF).
12 Credits equates to approximately 112 hours of study in total, divided into 4 Units, or ‘blocks’, of work that you need to complete over the 9 months to gain the Qualification. This equates to approximately 28 hours of study per Unit and you have 8 weeks to complete each Unit. Note that the 28 hours includes the reading of the course notes AND your background reading and writing up of the Workbook for each Unit. In short, on average, you should allow about 4 hours of study per week. This time may well be less depending on your current level of clinical knowledge.
The course is undertaken entirely as distance learning and workbook assessment of short, directed questions, there are no exams and no residential components that you must attend.



The day-to-day hustle and bustle of the modern small animal veterinary practice is an intimidating environment for most cats and dogs, and often their owners too. Stressed pets may react in a number of different ways from showing defensive and aggressive behaviours in an attempt to avoid handling, to becoming stoical and non-responsive, presenting with few external signs of being seriously unwell. How an individual pet feels, and therefore behaves, is determined by how he perceives and evaluates the plethora of different experiences involved in his visit, from arriving at the practice with the owner through to discharge at the end of a consultation or procedure, along with all the clinical evaluations and handling that may have taken place along the way. Ultimately, how a pet adapts and copes in such an environment is determined by many different factors including genetics, age and previous experiences.


There are many simple and inexpensive steps that a practice can take to help ensure that their patients’ experiences, and those of their clients, are as stress-free and as pleasant as possible. These steps can help to increase a cat’s and dog’s confidence and comfort during subsequent visits, which in turn is of huge benefit to the veterinary staff involved too.


In this course you will:

  • Learn key aspects of emotionality in pets and why it is important.
  • Learn how and identify the potential stressors on your patients in your veterinary practice and how these impact on their psychological wellbeing.
  • Learn what simple, practical steps you can take to improve the key areas of your practice, including the waiting and consulting areas and hospitalisation areas.
  • Learn how to manage and handle fearful, injured and recovering cats and dogs safely, while keeping avoidable stressors at a minimum.
  • Understand common feline and canine behaviour problems and the role of the veterinary nurse in today’s modern veterinary practice.
  • Examine the nuts and bolts of establishing a successful behaviour clinic in your veterinary practice.
  • Learn the essential skills required in obtaining an accurate and comprehensive behavioural history of a problem, how to evaluate the causes of the problem, and then, working with the owner, how to construct a practical plan to help them approach, manage and resolve the problem.


The Level 3 Award in Canine and Feline Behaviour Management in Veterinary Nursing (RQF) is intended for qualified veterinary nurses and others working within the veterinary profession. Ultimately, successful completion of this course will further enable veterinary nurses to support canine and feline patients in routine clinics, critical care and chronic disease, ensuring best practice principles for these patients.


Course Information

Authors and Tutors: COAPE

Course Type: Distance Learning.


Course Format: Each Unit of the course notes is e-mailed out to students as a separate e-Book.


We supply you with a specially designed ‘template’ on-line to assist you in writing your coursework using your own computer and preferred word processing software. Your coursework is submitted to your tutor via the internet, marked and returned back to you the same way.


Course Duration: Start in February and September of each year. The duration of the course is 9 months.


Abilities Required for This Course: Available only to Qualified Veterinary Nurses.

Course fee: £594.00 + Registration Fee of £76.00 = £670.00

ALL fees shown include VAT (registration no. 187211800).