Do You Need a License to Be a Dog Trainer?

Dog trainers use their training skills to educate dogs on obedience and basic behavior modifications. They also work with reactive and fearful animals, helping owners to understand and change their behavior patterns. Many trainers specialize in a particular type of work, such as service dogs or search and rescue dogs.

You’ll need to train a lot of dogs before you become an experienced professional. Start by volunteering at an animal shelter, where you’ll gain hands-on experience with dogs of all ages and abilities. This experience can help you learn how to train dogs with a variety of problems, and it’s a great way to meet potential clients.

Once you’re comfortable with working with dogs, apply for job opportunities at local pet stores and animal training organizations, including shelters, vet clinics, grooming shops, and boarding facilities. Once you’ve gained the necessary experience, seek out a certification program to test your skills and advance your career.

Becoming a Professional Dog Trainer

If you have a degree in a field such as animal care or biology, it can be useful to complete an accredited program in dog training. This can include courses in animal behavior, psychology, and ethology, as well as training techniques. You should also take a certification exam like CPDT-KA (Certified Professional Dog Trainer-Knowledge Assessed), which tests your knowledge and skills in a range of areas.

A CCPDT certification will help you stand out from the competition by demonstrating that you know and practice science-based dog training. It also shows clients and prospects that you’re a serious professional who has undergone rigorous testing.

Becoming a Professional Dog trainer can be a very rewarding career, and it can provide you with a stable income. You can find a dog training job at a large or small business, or you may start your own dog-training company.

The dog-training profession is growing rapidly and is a lucrative business opportunity, so you can expect to make good money in this field. However, your salary will vary depending on your location and experience level.

It is important to note that some states don’t require dog trainers to be licensed or certified, so it is possible that you could find yourself working without these credentials. Licensing is a step toward protecting the public and animals from unscrupulous or unqualified trainers who might be more likely to harm the animals they work with.

How does a state’s dog trainer licensing legislation work?

Under the model legislation, once a state’s dog trainer licensing board has been established, all dog trainers who work for financial compensation would need to be licensed or obtain a provisional permit. This license would authorize the trainer to do the work and be subject to any other restrictions imposed by the state’s Dog Trainer Licensure Board. During a transitional phase-in period, currently practicing dog trainers with at least one year of experience and who commit to abide by the Dog Trainer Licensure Board’s policies on aversive training techniques could be granted an initial license.