Cats are one of the UK’s most popular companion pets, with 24% of adults in the UK caring for one or more amongst the estimated population of 10.7 million cats.
Although there are millions of cat owners in the UK, not everyone is capable of caring for their animals safely and responsibly. Around 1 million animals experience some form of abuse each year. Animal welfare charities are able to rescue around 10% of those due to a lack of resources and people.
If animal welfare, particularly cat protection, is something you care deeply about then a valuable and rewarding career awaits you.
While it is encouraging to see opportunities for these positions opening, the rising demand for cat welfare jobs have created an urgency for further education. By getting educated on the best practices within this area of work you’re setting yourself up for a prospering career.
Read on to explore the different professionals available within feline welfare, and how studying animal care courses online will help you achieve your goals.
Is a career in Cat Protection right for me?
Before committing to a career in cat protection, it is important to consider whether the role is a good fit for you.
While the idea of a career of caring for cats in need is desirable, the reality can be quite different. As such you need to be prepared for all aspects of the job, not just the softer side. Alongside the more rewarding moments, there are plenty of challenging aspects that come with working in animal welfare. A role in cat protection can be both physically and emotionally demanding, but for those working in the industry, it’s more than worth it.
Abandonment, and cruelty towards cats are unfortunately commonplace, progressing to a point of crisis. While working in this field, you may come across cats that are in emotional distress, showing signs of neglect or abused. It can be difficult seeing cats in a bad state in this line of work, so you need to be comfortable with this aspect of the job.
However, witnessing the recovery of injured or abused cats first-hand ultimately gives you an overwhelming sense of fulfilment in this challenging career path.
The future of feline welfare relies on workers and supporters who are willing to dedicate their time and money to a worthwhile cause. Whether this comes in the form of an animal inspector, animal care assistant, fundraiser, or even a marketing role. There are plenty of opportunities to make a difference to feline lives!
What career options are available?
There are various roles within cat protection depending on your skills and experience. While not all of these require a qualification or previous experience, many do, and plenty roles can be achieved by completing online animal courses. While traditional qualifications will often suffice for office-based roles, field roles will often demand specific knowledge and skills.
Charity workers and fundraisers
The best way to support cat protection efforts and improve legislation surrounding felines is to join established charities and front-line charity workers.
A standout charity and the leading authority on cat welfare is Cats Protection. Their main objectives are to find supportive homes for cats in need and share information to improve people’s understanding of cat’s fundamental needs.
You must prepare yourself for all scenarios that may arise in this profession. You’ll need to understand how to respectfully remove cats from abusive, neglectful environments. You will also need to learn current animal welfare legislation and codes of practice to provide competent care for the animal.
Your day may consist of:
- Sourcing new, loving forever homes for homeless cats
- Raising awareness
- Personally taking care of the animal themselves
While careers in the non-profit sector may not offer the highest salaries, these roles are requisite for ensuring the future of the feline.
The way to truly overcome the cat abandonment crisis is to prevent the issue before it has begun. Preventative strategies of cat protection typically come in the form of animal inspectors. The role of an Animal Inspector ensures that the animals in someone care are being treated properly.
As a licensed inspector, you will be ensuring that businesses and licensed individuals are adhering to current legislation. To progress into this role, you must understand the steps of remedial action needed to ensure an animal’s wellbeing.
In reference to cat prevention, this may involve visiting catteries and boarding facilities. You’ll need to check the animals are kept in suitable accommodation, regularly exercised, and protected from pain and suffering.
In this role, you may have to manage aggressive, confrontational, and emotionally disturbing situations. So, you must be prepared for all situations that may arise.
However, if you are invested in removing animals from dangerous environments and giving them a new lease of life, this rewarding career could be the next step for you.
Cat Care Assistant
One of the top career choices for someone who loves caring for cats is a Cat Care Assistant. While working alongside charity workers and volunteers, you would be personally responsible for:
- Monitoring the animal’s health
- Cleaning and grooming
- Preparing and handling food
- Ensuring each animal is being exercised regularly
This allows you to tailor the care you provide to each cat and watch them on their journey to recovery. There are plenty of animal care courses online that can lead you to this career path.
Marketing in Cat Protection
In this interconnected age, the best way to raise awareness and promote animal welfare is marketing.
Marketers and Communication Officers utilise the whole of the online space to communicate with the organisation’s audience. This can come in the form of:
- Social media posts
- Email newsletters
- Blog posts
- Video content
However, the ongoing demand to rescue and relocate cats from abusive homes are forcing marketers to become more creative in their ongoing campaigns.
Marketing and communications in non-profits are designed to reach people and inform them of current legislation. Giving them the necessary statistics and inspiring people to sign petitions or support charities to make a difference.
While this role is not as hands-on as a Cat Care Assistant, or a charity worker, there is a strong sense of personal fulfilment in making a difference behind the screen. If you’re passionate about marketing and communications, and the welfare of cats, progressing into this career may be the right course of action for you.
Start your learning journey now.
Embarking on a new career path or deciding to enter a new area of study can be a daunting experience, which is why we aim to make the transition as seamless as possible. learndirect is the UK’s leading distance learning online course providers, which is built around you, the learner.
With all our online animal courses readily available at the click of a mouse, taking the leap to pursue a career that you’re passionate about has never been easier.
learndirect offer a varied range of veterinary and animal courses to help you prepare for your next steps! Whether that’s delving straight into the profession, or progressing with your learning, you will be fully equipped for the cat-caring world.
You can also keep track of all animal awareness days and events with our FREE calendar! Download it here.