Animal Management and Agriculture

If you are passionate about caring for animals though and understand the impact they can have in our lives, this is the pathway for you.


It’s not all bounding bunnies and playful puppies: on an animal management course, you might be entrusted with the care and maintenance of a wide variety of animals.

Our state-of-the-art Animal Management centre has a zoo licence, giving you the opportunity to develop skills and knowledge in a realistic professional environment. The centre has an arid biome, tropical biome, and nocturnal room, allowing you to study and care for a wide range of animals in a near-natural environment.

We also have a fully functioning farm with rare breed sheep and cows, pigs, goats, llamas, donkeys, chickens, ducks and many more! We are proud of our large collection of animals—which also includes meerkats, tropical birds, reptiles, a skunk, and red squirrels—and plan to add many more to the collection soon.

Our course tutors are passionate and knowledgeable, with industry related experience and we have great connections with local and global organisations such as the RSPCA, Battersea Dogs’ and Cats’ Home, Chessington Zoo, Tilgate Nature Centre, and more.

Our coveted work experience programmes have included contributing to conservation work and local community projects, working with chimpanzees in West Africa, dolphins in the Bahamas, , orangutans in Borneo, wild otters in Cornwall, dog trainers and organisations such as Compassion in World Farming.


Our agriculture courses cover units on animal anatomy and physiology, plant science and soil science, also teaching the basics of machinery operations, estate management farm animal production and conservation.

We are very proud that we were accredited with the first Rare Breed Survival Trust education facility in 2021 which allows you to work with some the UK’s rarest native breeds of cows, sheep, pigs and poultry within the world of farming, alongside other species such as goats, donkeys, Rheas, alpacas and Llamas.

Alongside learning new technological approaches and techniques in commercial production, you will also be involved in traditional livestock production focusing on genetic diversity; assisting the sector in facing yet unknown challenges in the form of disease resistance, climate adaptation and food security. Native breeds provide a major contribution to our rural economy, both economic and culturally. There are around 30,000 herds and flocks of native breeds in the UK. They contribute over £700 million to UK local economies.

On the farm this will mean you will work with a variety of livestock; assisting with general husbandry, handling, health and maintenance, overseeing breeding programmes, working our annual lambing season, shearing sheep and bottle feeding / rearing young livestock and the potential to represent the college at local agricultural shows showing our livestock.

Agriculture students also get the opportunity to complete valuable work experience at a wide choice of locations such as livestock farms, local farm parks and attractions, lambing placements at a variety of farms and shearing placements. Regular trips and visits to places such as the British Wool Board, dairy farms, rare breed parks, livestock markets and agricultural shows are also an exciting feature of this course.

You see, this the sector isn’t just for people who want to work on a farm or run one. Those people might form the backbone of the industry, but the food produced on British farms is also the foundation of a much larger food and drink sector, contributing £108bn to the economy and employing nearly 4 million people. There are opportunities across this supply chain, and roles in the research and development sector, too. Get in touch with us and see how our Agriculture pathway can help you reach your goals.

Careers in the animal care and agriculture sectors are very hard work but are ultimately, extremely rewarding.

The animal care industry is worth over £1 billion to the UK economy, and boasts over 13,000 businesses, from pet shops and sanctuaries to zoos and wildlife parks.

There are 1,600 job openings per year in this sector and there is a further 6% growth expected over the next five years. If you are a self-confessed ‘animal person’, a career in animal management might be perfect for you. Possible careers include animal technician, zookeeper, pet shop worker, veterinary nurse, and many more.

The agriculture sector needs manufacturers, grounds people, farmers, distributors, researchers, sales executives, technicians, marketeers, logistics experts…the list goes on!

Whatever your skill set, there could be a job in agriculture for you!

Industry partnerships

Sumaya, Animal Management Level 3 If you’re thinking about studying animal management, Merrist Wood College is the place to do it. The campus itself is amazing, all the lecturers have experience in the industry and they make an effort to shape the course to your interests.
Read my story