The data above reflects employment and wage trends for NSCC's academic degrees associated with career groups established by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Massachusetts is on the forefront of animal care and advocacy.

Tend to the needs of animals, promote good animal care and responsible pet management with a rewarding career as an Animal Care Specialist.

For many working in this field, it’s not just a job, it’s a calling. At NSCC, you can learn to work with dogs, cats, birds, and other small animals in a variety of ways with an Animal Care Specialist Associate in Applied Science Degree. The program focuses on behavior, nutrition, health, and training, as well as the commitment to ethical aspects of animal care and management. NSCC abides by standards put forth by the College’s Institution Animal Care and Use Committee.

Animals Care Specialists work in these fields:

  • Animal Control
  • Shelter and Rescue
  • Animal Day Care and Boarding
  • Kennel Management
  • Dog Walking
  • Training
  • Grooming
  • Retail Pet Business

As a student in NSCC’s Animal Care Specialist Associate of Arts degree program, you will learn about:

  • Recognize the basic elements of animal care for companion pets, such as handling, management, and nutrition.
  • Observe and interpret canine and feline body language communication to improve overall health during care.
  • Identify legal and ethical issues that impact companion pets.
  • Describe the basic methods utilized in canine training
  • Explain the benefits of vaccine protocol and preventative treatment methods in animal health.
  • Compare the proper care, housing and nutrition for birds, reptiles, and small mammals.

Next Steps

Special Admissions Program

Alternative Credentials

Technical Standards

Achievement and Outcomes

Learner Outcomes

Guided Pathway Sheet

Get in touch

If you have questions related to program admissions or applications, please contact or call 978-762-4188.

If you have program advising related questions, please contact or call 978-762-4048.


Program Requirements

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North Shore Community College is an accredited public institute of higher education where all are welcome and each is challenged. NSCC is accredited by NECHE, the New England Commission of Higher Education.

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