35529 - Care and Management of Companion Animals

Academic Year 2021/2022

  • Docente: Giacomo Biagi
  • Credits: 2
  • SSD: AGR/19
  • Language: Italian
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Bologna
  • Corso: Single cycle degree programme (LMCU) in Veterinary Medicine (cod. 8617)

Learning outcomes

Students are taught about the breeding and feeding techniques for dogs and cats. Students will be also taught about morphology of the most important canine and feline breeds, the criteria of choice of the most appropriate food, and the most frequent problems in the breeding of puppies and kittens.

Course contents


The objective of the Integrated Course is to provide the student with knowledge relating to the breeding of livestock (poultry, rabbit and fish) and pets. With regard to farm animals, this knowledge will refer to the profitability of the breeding itself and the implications on quality of animal products, animal welfare and environmental protection. With regard to pets, the student will know the main canine and feline breeds and the most important problems that recognize a hereditary basis

The Integrated Course will be divided into 3 courses:

- Aviculture (theoretical lessons and practical activities held by Prof. Luca Sardi)

- Aquaculture and small species breeding (theoretical lessons and practical activities held by Prof. Pier Paolo Gatta)

- Care and management of companion animals (theoretical lessons and practical activities held by Prof. Giacomo Biagi)

At the beginning of the course, detailed information will be provided on the internal organization of the theoretical and practical lesson timetable, as well as on the examination methods and registration.

Specifically, the following topics will be covered in the course of Care and management of companion animals.

Aspects of canine and feline morphology. Description and evaluation of the main canine and feline breeds. The morphological assessment of dogs and cats. Major genetic diseases of dogs and cats. HCanine hereditary diseases that depend on the diet. Nutritional strategies for the modulation of the intestinal microbiota of dogs and cats. How nutrition can affect behavior and cognitive functions. Alternative food practices (BARF, vegetarian, vegan diet).


  • Bonetti F. Zoognostica del cane. Editrice San Giorgio, Bologna 1995.
  • Grandjean e coll. Allevamento canino: guida pratica. Royal Canin 2016
  • Malandain E, Little S, Casseleux G, Shelton L, Pibot P, Paragon BM. Allevamento del gatto. Guida pratica. Royal Canin 2006.
  • Grassi E. L'allevamento cinofilo. Organizzazione, criteri di selezione, gestione. Edagricole, 2007

Teaching methods

Lectures and, compatibly with the pandemic situation, a visit to a dog breeding kennel. Should the visit to the kennel not be possible for health reasons, students will be offered interactive cases of managing a dog and/or cat breeding structure and a seminar held by a veterinarian working at dog and/or cat breeding structure.

Students with special needs are invited to contact the teacher by e-mail to organize the teaching and examinations in the best possible way.

Assessment methods

The grade of the integrated course of Animal Production I will be registered by the holder of the integrated course (prof. Luca Sardi) through a special list in almaesami.

The exam tests will be guaranteed online. Based on the evolution of the health context, the examination tests may also take place in the presence of students when possible. The exam aims at verifying the achievement of the teaching objectives and the acquisition of the knowledge provided by the course program. The final grade originates from the student's demonstration of having acquired the knowledge and skills required, and the ability to link the various issues.

The exam will consist of an interview. In the presence of a preparation on a very limited number of topics covered in the course and analytical skills that emerge only with the help of the teacher, with the use of an overall correct language, the result will be a grade between 18 and 19. With a preparation on a limited number of topics covered in the course, autonomous analysis skills only on purely executive matters, with the use of a correct language, the grade will be between 20 and 24. With a preparation on a large number of topics addressed in the course, the ability to show critical analysis and the mastery of specific terminology the grade will be between 25 and 29. With exhaustive preparation on the topics addressed in the course, independent choices of critical analysis and connection, full mastery of specific terminology and ability to argumentation and self-reflection, the result will be a grade between 30 and 30 cum laude.

The integrated course of Animal Production I is considered passed when the student has obtained the sufficiency (18/30) in each of the courses that compose it. The final grade will result from the arithmetic average of the marks obtained in the three courses that make up the integrated course.

Teaching tools

Personal computer and video projector

Office hours

See the website of Giacomo Biagi


Good health and well-being Life on land

This teaching activity contributes to the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals of the UN 2030 Agenda.