Animal Forensics: Animal Cruelty & Interpersonal Violence | Centre for Veterinary Education

Animal Forensics: Animal Cruelty & Interpersonal Violence

This course will explore the relationship between human violence and animal maltreatment, its history, its presence in the legal system, society and the family.

The course will explore resources available and how veterinary professionals can work within their community to facilitate a more effective response to cruelty and violence.

Veterinarians and forensic specialists play a central role in the investigation and prosecution of animal abuse and neglect. This veterinary forensic course will prepare you for real-world situations in veterinary forensic medicine by faculty members who have years of experience in the field working with law enforcement and animal protection organisations.

You will learn how to process animal crimes scenes, handle and interpret evidence, and recognise animal abuse, along with other skills that are vital to obtaining justice for abused animals.

This course is open to any professional involved in the investigation of crimes against animals, including veterinarians, veterinary technicians, animal control officers, non-governmental animal welfare organisations, wildlife and conservation officials and law enforcement officers.

Image source:

Course Partner:

Learning Outcomes

By successfully completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Develop fundamental knowledge of the relationship between animal abuse and interpersonal violence such as child abuse, elder abuse and domestic violence

  • Identify behaviors indicative or predictive of animal abuse and how to respond when those behaviors are observed

  • Describe how an abuser may use animal abuse as a means of control in a relationship

  • Identify and explore local resources for human and nonhuman victims of domestic violence


  1. Animal cruelty and the law

  2. Animal abuse and domestic violence

  3. Zoophilia and bestiality/animal sexual abuse

  4. Child abuse, elder abuse and animal abuse

  5. Animal hoarding

  6. Family violence and the role of the veterinary professional

Course Delivery

This course includes:

  • Video lectures with relevant photographs and case studies

  • Self-assessed multiple choice quizzes to test your knowledge and understanding

  • A discussion forum for conversation, debate and information exchange with your peers and tutors

  • An electronic certificate available for download upon successful completion of the course

The estimated time to complete this course is 10 hours and it will be open for 4 weeks.

RACE Approval – 10 CE Credits

This program was reviewed and approved by the AAVSB RACE program for 10 hours of continuing education. Participants should be aware that some boards have limitations on the number of hours accepted in certain categories and/or restrictions on certain methods of delivery of continuing education. Please contact the AAVSB RACE program if you have any comments/concerns regarding this program’s validity or relevancy to the veterinary profession.


Monday 22 October - Sunday 18 November 2018
Delivered Online



Jason Byrd is the Associate Director of the William R. Maples Center for Forensic Medicine at the University of Florida’s College of Medicine. At the University of Florida, he instructs courses in forensic science at the University of Florida’s nationally recognized Hume Honors College. He is a Board Certified Forensic Entomologist and Diplomate of the American Board of Forensic Entomology. He was twice elected President of the American Board of Forensic Entomology, and is a Past-President of the North American Forensic Entomology Association. He is the first person to be elected President of both professional North American Forensic Entomology Associations. He served for over a decade as a faculty member of the Virginia Institute of Forensic Science and Medicine.

Outside of academia Jason serves within the National Disaster Medical System, Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team, Region IV. He also serves as the Logistics Chief for the Florida Emergency Mortuary Operations Response System. Currently he serves as a subject editor for the Journal of Medical Entomology. He has published numerous scientific articles on the use and application of entomological evidence in legal investigations. Jason has combined his formal academic training in Entomology and Forensic Science to serve as a consultant and educator in both criminal and civil legal investigations throughout the United States and Internationally. Jason specialises in the education of law enforcement officials, medical examiners, coroners, attorneys, and other death investigators on the use and applicability of arthropods in legal investigations. His research efforts have focused on the development and behaviour of insects that have forensic importance, and he has over 15 years experience in the collection and analysis of entomological evidence. Jason Byrd is a Fellow of the American Academy of Forensic Sciences, and serves as the Director of Education for the ASPCA Veterinary Forensic Sciences Program at the University of Florida. 

Course Fees

Member TypeTimeOnline
Recent Grad / Part-time Member$289
Student Member$145
Non-member / eMember$578
*Members include: Practice, Professional and Academic members

You may be eligible for a 10% discount off your registration, read the full Terms to see if you are eligible. The TimeOnline nurse rate is the same as the Recent Grad/Part-time member rate in the table above. Discounts and nurse registrations can’t be processed online so please contact the CVE on +61 2 9351 7979 or

Further details

Have a question? Your answer could be on our frequently asked questions page. If you cannot find an answer for your question, please email us or call us on +61 2 9351 7979.