Animal Health, Welfare and Nutrition

Animal health, welfare and nutrition are key issues that constrain production and limit the efficiency and sustainability of livestock production.

People working in animal health, welfare and nutrition examine the ways in which genetics, nutrition, disease control and behaviour of animals can be managed to improve animal well-being in livestock and companion animals.

Animal nutritionists examine the needs of animals based on individual factors, such as age and breed as well as analyse the nutritive values of animal feed products.

Sheep

Tasks common in Animal Health, Welfare and Nutrition
  • Conduct and evaluate dietary studies and other fodder, food and nutrition-related research
  • Develop and administer food, fodder and nutrition policies as required
  • Educating individuals and groups on appropriate diets, product mix, dietary planning and preparation of fodder or food to treat illness or disease, and/or to enhance and maintain optimum health and productive performance
  • Determine performance benchmarks as defined by regulatory and company policies
  • Advise on product development and marketing strategies and provide nutritional information to consumer market
  • Monitor aspects of feed manufacturing and quality control
  • Research alternative raw product inputs for desired minimum nutritional outcomes
Some industries that employ Animal Health, Welfare and Nutrition experts
  • Agribusiness
  • Agricultural communications and media firms
  • Agriculture industries and animal production
  • Animal care and welfare
  • Animal health firms
  • Animal research and biotechnology industries
  • Breed organizations
  • Extension services
  • Federal, state and local government agencies
  • Feed companies and operations
  • Financial institutions
  • Food and meat processing companies
  • Inspection services
  • Livestock producers
  • Livestock publications
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Research laboratories
  • Universities of veterinary medicine
  • Zoos and Wildlife sanctuaries
Aptitudes for this career

Animal nutrition scientists enjoy working with animals, have strong communication skills, work independently and as part of a team and have good analytical, problem solving and organisational skills.

Planning this career path
  • Engaging with industry and confirming key interest areas and relevant experience can make you more competitive.
  • Undertaking part-time work or work experience on a property or business which runs production animals, or at the zoo or wildlife sanctuaries.
  • Joining industry relevant committees (e.g. Royal Agricultural Society).
  • Volunteering with RSPCA or other animal advocacy groups, and at agricultural shows.
  • Gaining laboratory experience (through temporary agencies offering student opportunities).

Tractor distributing feed to cattle at a feedlotCourse Choices for Animal Health, Welfare and Nutrition

Animal health and nutrition - researching and designing feed rations for livestock

Animal husbandry management

Animal husbandry

* For Bachelor of Agriculture students with high academic results wanting to complete a research project.