About this Course
4.8
506 ratings
146 reviews
What is your cat revealing to you when she purrs? What is your dog expressing when he yawns or wags his tail? Understanding your cat and dog’s behaviour and the way they communicate with you, will enable you to better understand their needs and strengthen your relationship with them. This MOOC is divided into five topics, the appliance of science; behaviour and body language, senses and perception; challenges for the human-animal relationship, including pet problem behaviour; and how to improve the quality of life for cats and dogs in our care. At the start of the course we ask you to consider what you feel is important to your cat/dog and what your cat/dog means to you? We explore the world of cats and dogs and how our relationships with them vary around the world and have changed over time. We ask if we can really know what our animals are thinking or trying to communicate through their facial expressions and behaviours. From our beloved pets to street dogs, shelter dogs/cats and welfare challenges, we explore the world from their perspective and examine how their genetic make-up may influence their behavioural responses and choices. We dispel common behavioural myths by looking through a scientific lens, asking questions about the function and development of their behaviour.. We explore how their senses help them to interact with their world and how they communicate with each other and us! Finally, we ask whether we impose unrealistic expectations on our cats and dogs and how this affects their ability to live alongside us. We ask, what can we do to be more responsible pet owners and to ensure the welfare of all cats and dogs in society? This MOOC explores different scientifically validated methods that can help you to better understand your pet, to enrich their lives and help you to be a more educated and confident pet owner. We hope you enjoy the course!...
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100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Clock

Suggested: 4 hours/week

Approx. 8 hours to complete
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English

Subtitles: English, Japanese, Chinese (Simplified)

Skills you will gain

AnimalAnimal BehaviorDogBehavior Problems Diagnosis And Treatment
Globe

100% online courses

Start instantly and learn at your own schedule.
Calendar

Flexible deadlines

Reset deadlines in accordance to your schedule.
Clock

Suggested: 4 hours/week

Approx. 8 hours to complete
Comment Dots

English

Subtitles: English, Japanese, Chinese (Simplified)

Syllabus - What you will learn from this course

1

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

The Appliance of Science

In week 1, we provide 'an insight into cats and dogs behaviour: through their eyes'. We will explore cats and dogs of the world and ask you what you cat and dog mean to you, as well as what you feel is important to your cat and dog. At the end of the week, you will be able to complete the first of the graded quizzes. We hope you enjoy the MOOC as much as we have enjoyed making it!...
Reading
10 videos (Total 32 min), 5 readings, 2 quizzes
Video10 videos
Introduction to week 12m
Cats in the World4m
Dogs in the World3m
Dogs, cats and humans5m
Voxpops - what our cats & dogs mean to us3m
Unrealistic expectations for animals to cope with unnatural situations - part 11m
Responsibilities of pet owners2m
Responsibilities of the Veterinary Profession2m
Voxpops - what's important to our cats and dogs2m
Reading5 readings
How To Use This Course10m
Statement of Ethics10m
Overview: week 110m
Ask the experts - audio response10m
Additional Resources10m
Quiz2 practice exercises
Sentient beings2m
Week 1 assessment20m

2

Section
Clock
3 hours to complete

Ethology

In week 2, we will we explore ethology, which is the scientific and objective study of non-human animal behaviour, rather than human behaviour, and usually with a focus on behaviour under natural conditions. There will also be an opportunity to look at different breeds of cats and dogs and some of the possible issues that arise from breeding. At the end of the week, you will be able to complete the second of the graded quizzes....
Reading
8 videos (Total 77 min), 2 readings, 5 quizzes
Video8 videos
Dog domestication13m
Dog Ethology5m
Breeds and their uses6m
Alpha Dog5m
Ethology and Domestication6m
Genetics of a Cat9m
Ask the experts - video response27m
Reading2 readings
Overview: week 210m
Additional Resources10m
Quiz5 practice exercises
Test your knowledge: dogs10m
Test your knowledge: cats10m
Praising dogs2m
Cats and their environment2m
Week 2 assessment20m

3

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

Sense and Sensibility

In week 3, we aim to explore cat and dog sensory capabilities and how they interact with their world. We will explore how our cats and dogs communicate with us and each other. We will also examine how their specific senses work and how they use these to operate effectively such as to solve problems, hunt, and play. At the end of the week, you will be able to complete the third of the graded quizzes....
Reading
7 videos (Total 44 min), 3 readings, 3 quizzes
Video7 videos
Feline body language5m
Cat intelligence: hunting, problem solving, play and human Intelligence10m
Dog senses4m
Canine Communication7m
Dog Intelligence3m
Ask the experts - video response8m
Reading3 readings
Overview: week 310m
Video references: Cat intelligence: hunting, problem solving, play and human Intelligence10m
Additional Resources10m
Quiz3 practice exercises
Happy/content cats2m
Happy/content dogs2m
Week 3 assessment20m

4

Section
Clock
2 hours to complete

Living with humans

In week 4, we explore the domestic environment and how our cats and dogs adjust to this (or not). We will also discuss what behaviours may arise due to the unrealistic expectations that we may impose on our pets. The videos this week, will help you recognise the signs of fear, frustration, and anxiety, as well as other behavioural problems in cats and dogs. At the end of the week, you will be able to complete the fourth graded quiz....
Reading
9 videos (Total 57 min), 2 readings, 3 quizzes
Video9 videos
Is love enough?2m
unrealistic expectations for animals to cope with unnatural situations - part 24m
Problems for our pets – what is the their experience?6m
Cat myths13m
Modern challenges for modern dogs5m
Dog Aggression7m
Street Dog5m
Ask the experts - video response8m
Reading2 readings
Overview: week 410m
Additional Resources10m
Quiz3 practice exercises
Anxious/scared cats2m
Anxious/scared dogs2m
Week 4 assessment20m
4.8
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75%

started a new career after completing these courses
Briefcase

83%

got a tangible career benefit from this course

Top Reviews

By CNMar 4th 2018

This is a very informative, interesting and well prepared on-line course with lots of documentation that one can read later on in order to get more knowledgeable about dogs and cats. Thanks!

By JKOct 15th 2017

Thank you! I do enjoyed this course. I got a lot of new information about cats stress, dogs and cats welfare. I will use this knowledge with my pets and in my dogtraining practice.

Instructors

Miss Hayley Walters, RVN

Welfare and Anaesthesia

Dr Heather Bacon

Veterinary welfare edcuation and outreach
Jeanne Marchig International Centre of Animal Welfare Education

Professor Nat Waran

Professor of One Welfare
Eastern Institute of Technology, Napier, Hawkes Bay, New Zealand.

Dr Amy Miele

Lecturer in Clinical Animal Behaviour
Jeanne Marchig International Centre for Animal Welfare Education

About The University of Edinburgh

Influencing the world since 1583, The University of Edinburgh is consistently ranked as one of the world's top 50 universities. Today, we are an established and global leader in online learning, providing degree-level education to 3,000 online students in addition to 36,000 students on-campus. We also offer a wide range of free online courses in a variety of subjects. To find out more about studying for one of our online degrees, search for ‘Edinburgh online’ or visit www.ed.ac.uk/studying/online-learning/postgraduate ...

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Once you enroll for a Certificate, you’ll have access to all videos, quizzes, and programming assignments (if applicable). Peer review assignments can only be submitted and reviewed once your session has begun. If you choose to explore the course without purchasing, you may not be able to access certain assignments.

  • When you purchase a Certificate you get access to all course materials, including graded assignments. Upon completing the course, your electronic Certificate will be added to your Accomplishments page - from there, you can print your Certificate or add it to your LinkedIn profile. If you only want to read and view the course content, you can audit the course for free.

More questions? Visit the Learner Help Center.