Dog training jobs combine both knowledge of animal behavior and practical skills. To become a dog trainer, you need to be patient and consistent with excellent communication skills. Most dog trainers are self-employed, although a few usually work as head trainers.
Trainers can be employed by veterinary clinics, animal shelters, or boarding kennels. You can provide private lessons, home visits, or group lessons.
You have the option of specializing in aggression management, behavioral modification, therapy, obedience, trick training, puppy training, or agility. There is another option where you can work with specific breeds, too.
Dog Trainer Job Description
If you have a love for dogs, this should be a walk in the park… literally! Some of your typical duties will include the following.
· You will use techniques, such as reward systems, to teach and reinforce dog behavior.
· You will examine the dog’s progress and advise owners as to how they can best enhance these methods at home.
· You will also advise on some additional exercises to be undertaken during the trainer’s absence.
· You should always be sensitive towards the dog owners and educate them on the role they play during their dog training.
Dog Training Salary Expectations
Your salary as a dog trainer will depend on your area of expertise, level of experience, certificates, and level of education. It will also depend on the nature of the training you are offering. As such, expect to earn an annual salary of around $34,760, which is an equivalent of $16.71 per hour.
According to statistics, the top 10% highest paid earn more than $56,000, which is about $26.92 per hour, whereas the lowest 10% earn less than $19,610, which is $9.43 per hour. You should also factor in additional costs, such as travel, insurance, training facilities, plus other forms of transport.
Dog Trainer Job Eligibility
The good news is that you do not necessarily need any formal training or license to get a job, but if you like, you can go for a certificate in a related field. You can join a training school where you will learn theories about dog evolution, teaching techniques, and behavior.
Getting a certificate from CCPDT (Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers) will go a long way in ensuring that you learn practical skills on how to train and ensuring that you get an attestation from a veterinarian. You can also join the Association for Pet Dog Trainers(APDT). Once you achieve the CCPDT certification, you can then go ahead and join this association. Note that joining this course will require you to at least attain an 85% pass mark.
Skills and Competencies of a Dog Trainer
Not everyone can become a dog trainer. There are certain inherent qualities you must exhibit to succeed in this career.
· Patience: If you are the kind who quickly gets frustrated, this might not be the job for you. Dogs are very good at picking up attitudes, regardless of whether it’s visible or not.
· Confidence: The more confident you are, the more dogs will be attracted to you. You will also stand high chances of getting referrals from old clients. It’s good to be confident about what you are bringing to the table and let clients know you will deliver.
· Communication Skills: Simply put, if you can’t communicate with dogs and their owners, you might as well consider another career.
· Passion: If you have no passion for dogs, try your luck somewhere else.
These are some of the qualities you must exhibit before thinking of taking on this career path. If you love and enjoy being around dogs, then being a dog trainer might just be the right career for you to consider!