Unit of competency details

ACMGAS201 - Work in the animal care industry (Release 1)


Usage recommendation:
Supersedes and is equivalent to ACMGAS201A - Work in the animal care industryUpdated to meet Standards for Training Packages 28/Nov/2017
Is superseded by ACMGEN201 - Work in the animal care industryMinor edits to performance criteria for clarity. New element 2 to cover species and breed identification and characteristics. Element 4 removed and outcomes added to Foundation Skills. Assessment requirements updated 12/Apr/2021

Release Status:
ReleaseRelease date
1 1 (this release) 29/Nov/2017


SchemeCodeClassification value
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 120505 Work Practices Programmes 

Classification history

SchemeCodeClassification valueStart dateEnd date
ASCED Module/Unit of Competency Field of Education Identifier 120505 Work Practices Programmes 29/Nov/2017 
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Unit Of competency

Modification History



Release 1

This version released with ACM Animal Care and Management Training Package Version 1.0.


This unit of competency describes the skills and knowledge required to conduct animal care work practices with consideration to animal needs in an ethical and humane manner.

This unit is applicable to new entrants to the animal care and management industry. Animal care may occur in a wide variety of workplaces, including retail pet stores, kennels and catteries, shelters, veterinary practices, zoos, animal research facilities and others.

This unit applies to individuals who work under general supervision and exercise limited autonomy. They undertake defined activities and work in a structured context.

No occupational licensing, legislative or certification requirements are known to apply to this unit at the time of publication.

NOTE: The terms 'occupational health and safety' (OHS) and 'work health and safety' (WHS) generally have the same meaning in the workplace. In jurisdictions where the national model WHS legislation has not been implemented, RTOs must contextualise the unit of competency by referring to current OHS legislative requirements.

Pre-requisite Unit


Unit Sector

General Animal Studies (GAS)

Elements and Performance Criteria


Performance Criteria 

Elements describe the essential outcomes.

Performance criteria describe the performance needed to demonstrate achievement of the element.

1. Contribute to a productive work environment

1.1 Collect and interpret information on working in the industry, including employment terms and conditions

1.2 Perform personal work practices to contribute positively to quality, productivity and effective relationships in the work environment

1.3 Comply with industry and workplace-specific management structures and lines of reporting

1.4 Follow work schedule according to workplace policies and procedures

1.5 Perform job-specific work practices and comply with the principles of ethical conduct, WHS guidelines, environmental processes and industry best practice

1.6 Observe and understand the need for workplace confidentiality

2. Recognise animals in the workplace

2.1 Identify a range of animals according to workplace requirements that are commonly found in the workplace

2.2 Describe animals using identifiable characteristics

3. Use industry terminology

3.1 Interpret and use industry terminology related to work personnel, equipment and work practices

3.2 Use language style, terminology and manner appropriate to the audience

4. Incorporate animal needs in conduct of work practices

4.1 Identify and follow workplace procedures relevant to animal care work

4.2 Complete work routines with consideration of animal health and wellbeing priorities

4.3 Handle and interact with animal with due consideration to the risks and the social and behavioural characteristics of the species

4.4 Comply with hygiene protocols to ensure animal health

4.5 Follow security protocols to ensure animal safety

Foundation Skills

This section describes those language, literacy, numeracy and employment skills that are essential for performance in this unit of competency but are not explicit in the performance criteria.




  • Interpret detail in work schedule

Unit Mapping Information

Code and title current version 

Code and title previous version 


Equivalence status 

ACMGAS201 Work in the animal care industry

ACMGAS201A Work in the animal care industry

Updated to meet Standards for Training Packages

Equivalent unit


Companion Volumes, including Implementation Guides, are available at VETNet: - https://vetnet.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=b75f4b23-54c9-4cc9-a5db-d3502d154103


Assessment requirements

Modification History



Release 1

This version released with ACM Animal Care and Management Training Package Version 1.0.

Performance Evidence

An individual demonstrating competency must satisfy all of the elements and performance criteria in this unit.

There must be evidence that the individual has worked effectively and safely in the animal care industry, including:

  • carried out routine animal care work routines with three different animals, showing consideration to animal care needs in an ethical and humane manner
  • complied with relevant legislation, regulations and codes of practice, including animal welfare and WHS legislation
  • communicated effectively with supervisor and other staff using industry-appropriate terminology
  • followed task instructions to complete work activities.

Knowledge Evidence

An individual must be able to demonstrate the knowledge required to perform the tasks outlined in the elements and performance criteria of this unit. This includes knowledge of:

  • services available in different animal care sectors, including:
  • animal technology, including biomedical research
  • animal control and regulation
  • captive animals
  • companion animal services
  • veterinary practices
  • relationships between sectors and other industries
  • industry work conditions
  • legislation that affects the industry, including:
  • WHS
  • industrial relations and employment terms and conditions
  • career opportunities within the industry
  • appropriate industry work ethics
  • industry quality assurance standards
  • policies and procedures, including:
  • animal welfare
  • environmental sustainability practices
  • infection control plans
  • standard operating procedures
  • risks of working with animals, including:
  • animal bites, envenomation, kicks, scratches and crush injuries
  • biological hazardous waste and sharps disposal
  • handling of chemicals and medicines
  • gas leakage
  • inhalation of aerosol particles
  • intraocular contamination
  • manual handling, including carrying, lifting and shifting
  • needle pricks and cuts from other sharps
  • release of infective agents (animal and human)
  • slippery or uneven work surfaces
  • zoonoses
  • general job responsibilities in a range of animal care sectors
  • identifiable animal characteristics, including:
  • age, sex and size
  • coat or skin colours and texture
  • eye colour
  • markings, patterns and permanent scars
  • toe nail colour
  • microchip, ear tags, tattoos and markings and leg bands
  • movement and behaviour of animals
  • animal temperaments and behaviours and how they relate to associated risks and hazards
  • animal welfare requirements applicable to work role
  • common diseases, ailments, injuries and other impacts on animal health and wellbeing
  • the housing, exercise, social and activity needs of a range of animals
  • the industry expectations of conduct presentation, and work performance
  • the types of disinfectants, cleaning agents, cleaning techniques and cleaning equipment and materials used in an animal care workplace.

Assessment Conditions

Assessment of skills must take place under the following conditions:

  • physical conditions:
  • an environment that accurately reflects a real workplace setting
  • resources, equipment and materials:
  • a range of animals
  • equipment and resources appropriate to work undertaken in an animal care environment
  • specifications:
  • access to organisational policies and procedures
  • current WHS and animal welfare legislation and regulations
  • relationships (internal and/or external):
  • interactions with supervisor
  • interactions with team members.

Assessors of this unit must satisfy the requirements for assessors in applicable vocational education and training legislation, frameworks and/or standards.


Companion Volumes, including Implementation Guides, are available at VETNet: - https://vetnet.gov.au/Pages/TrainingDocs.aspx?q=b75f4b23-54c9-4cc9-a5db-d3502d154103