How Long Does It Take To Become A Dog Trainer

dog training career Sep 01, 2020

So you would like to become a dog trainer but you are not sure how to get started.
There is a lot of dog training information floating around out there that can be confusing
for sure!

Let’s break down what you need to get started in a successful dog training career as a professional dog trainer.

Formal Education and Certification for Dog Training

The number one thing clients will look for is your education and credentials. Clients
want to know that you have a solid foundation education, that you know what you are
talking about when it comes to helping them achieve their goals with their dog, that they can trust you have the knowledge and skills needed to work with their family member
and that they will see results.


Training your own canine is just not enough. Some of the ways you can gain valuable
experience as you move forward in your career include volunteering at a local animal
shelter or with a local canine rescue group. You can walk and train adoptable dogs to
help them along in their journey to find new forever homes. Offer to work with your
friend’s and family’s dogs and teach them a new skill. Speak with a local pet store and
offer a free one-hour seminar to teach a new skill to their customers and staff. It is
amazing how quickly word of mouth will spread and how quickly clients will come
looking to acquire your services.

Business Skills

Having education and skills is only half the battle. Do you know what it takes to start a
business? What are your marketing and branding skills like? Do you have any SEO
experience? Bookkeeping skills? What about business licensing and insurance? In
order to succeed, you must have a foundation education in business-related skills.
Completing a program specifically for pet-related businesses will help you launch and
succeed. Good Dog Academy offers Business for Professional Dog Trainers.

Now you have an understanding of what you need to get started in a career as a
professional in the pet dog industry. It will take a lot of focus and hard work. Is it worth
it? How many dogs will you help? Can you make money training pet dogs? The answer
is an overwhelming yes.

The pet dog industry is booming especially in relation to dog training. There is no better
time to consider a career in training pet dogs. Just like you and me, millions of North
Americans love their dogs and regard them as family members. They want the best for
their dogs.

An unprecedented number of people are bringing puppies and dogs into their homes to
join their families. They need skilled and educated professionals to help them integrate
and properly raise and train their new furry family members. Pet dog training has proven
itself to be a recession-proof industry that has continual demand for qualified

The truth is, a well-behaved doggy is welcome in more public places and allows for
more freedom for both dog and owner. People want well-trained dogs!

The average pet dog owner will spend upwards of $500 training their doggy and with an
estimated 8.2 million dogs in Canada and an estimated 41% of households having a
pet, there is a large amount of money to be made within this industry.

Depending on your location and experience, a certified professional pet dog trainer
charges between $100 - $165 per spot in a group obedience class. To start, you could
charge between $50 - $100 per hour for private one-on-one coaching.

Most group classes are six weeks in length and are offered in succession, going from
puppy classes to basic obedience, intermediate and even further for some. Providing as
many options as possible for canine owners will not only enrich the lives of your clients
and their dogs, it will also add to your income. Pet dog training is an ongoing process
and pet owners will come back for more classes.

Offer Puppy Kindergarten, Basic Manners, Intermediate Skills, Advanced Skills and
maybe you want to offer a specialty class such as trick training or agility basics. The
more you offer the more options your clients have to choose from. Once you are able to
build a trusting relationship and your clients graduate from one of your classes, more
often than not they will sign up for more. Of course, your education will need to continue
after your foundation certificate to offer advanced classes.

One-on-one private sessions are a wonderful option for those whose schedules are too
busy to attend your group classes and also for those who have dogs with more
challenging behaviours. It is a great way to personalize training programs for specific

How long does it take to become a professional dog trainer?

Professional dog trainers put in a lot of work to start their careers. Don’t expect to take a
weekend course or a few seminars and be ready to launch your business. Acquiring

formal professional education takes time, effort and dedication. You will need to study
theory and put your new handling skills to work through practice.

As science evolves so does dog training. It is a constantly evolving industry. Education
should be ongoing throughout your career. Having a solid foundation of education
should not only prepare you for success but leave you feeling confident and ready to
launch your business.

How do I get started? Where can I find the best education?

Good Dog Academy offers a 28 week online comprehensive education program for
future dog trainers designed to help you gain the formal, in-depth knowledge needed to
succeed as a Professional Dog Trainer. The Professional Pet Dog Trainer Certificate
program combines theory and practical experience that will allow you to launch a
successful business training pet dogs. Learn how Critical Thinking and Focused
Observation will help you to stand out from your competition.

Study topics on becoming a dog trainer:
● Learning Theory
● Evolution of The Dog
● Principles of Dog Training
● Canine First Aid
● Dog Breeds
● Selecting a Dog
● Today’s Canine
● The Physical Dog
● And much more!

Once you have successfully completed Theory, then it is on to practical work. Train your
dog using our step by step coaching system and receive personalized feedback on your
skills from our Director of Training, Jaime Knowles. Jaime has been successfully
training dogs for over 25 years. This will give you the knowledge and skills necessary to
help your clients.

We also offer an online Business for the Professional Pet Dog Trainers program to help
aspiring pet lovers to become a canine trainer. During your time in this program, we will help you to create your own unique business path and challenge you to think about the
important details by working through business development specific exercises.

Check out our website for more information on our other training classes and Good Dog
Academy's Professional Pet Dog Trainer Program here


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