The Service Dog Trainer Program
Training service dogs is a noble career that gives you a chance to change people’s lives. You can learn how to become a service dog trainer at Animal Behavior College. The ABC Certified Service Dog Trainer online program teaches you how to work with dogs and their owners, making them an effective team. Enroll and become an ABC Certified Service Dog Trainer and make your dream of working with dogs and changing lives a reality.
Job Prospects and Service Dog Trainer Salary
Getting a Service Dog Trainer certificate online puts you on a path to fulfilling your dreams of working with service dogs, where you can make a difference in the lives of persons with disabilities. Becoming a Service Dog Trainer opens doors to several career options. You could work for an assistance dog organization, help train service dogs for veterans with PTSD, train mobility and/or medical-alert service dogs, work with hearing dogs and much more.
In February 2022, Kaiser Health News (KHN) reported exponential growth in service dog demand. “Demand for service dogs has exploded in recent years as dogs have proved adept at helping children and adults with an increasing range of disabilities,” said KHN. With 61 million people living with disabilities in the U.S. and only approximately 500,000 active service dogs, the field is wide-open for growth. The salary range for a service dog trainer is between $30k to $50k a year, according to Zippia, The Career Expert.1
In addition, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts overall employment of animal care and service workers is projected to grow 33 percent from 2020 to 2030, much faster than the average 8 percent for all occupations.2 This employment growth should result in very good job opportunities for those with service dog training experience.
This is your opportunity to have a successful career as a Service Dog Trainer and start your education today! If you are just starting out and need a dog trainer educational foundation, we encourage you to start with our basic Dog Obedience Program before growing into a skilled service dog trainer.
Learn more about ABC’s Service Dog Trainer Program
ABC’s Service Dog Trainer Certificate Online
Our Service Dog Trainer Program consists of 9 in-depth stages packed with information plus a final exam. The course contains vital information to prepare you for a career as a service dog trainer or start you on your path to even further service dog trainer education. Our program includes information on:
- service dog history
- service dog selection
- canine health
- living with a service dog
- obedience and maneuvers training
- service dog task foundations, cues and behavior chains
- training problems and solutions
- working with service dog clients/handlers
- how to build your career
- and much more!
Learn from Service Dog Training Professionals
Meet the authors and subject matter experts who were involved in the development of ABC’s Service Dog Trainer Program. They have shared their decades of dog training experience in the creation of this highly sought-after program.
Meet Anneliese Staff – Co-Author of the Service Dog Training ProgramAnneliese has trained service dogs and taught clients to train their own service dogs since 2004. She specializes in working with clients with complex medical conditions that cause both physical and psychiatric limitations. Anneliese also has extensive experience in the overall pet-care industry, including breed rescue, raising working puppies at a purpose-bred breeding kennel, operating a boarding kennel, performing various support roles in veterinary clinics, competing in dog grooming shows, managing grooming salons, sewing custom dog harnesses, fostering rescue dogs, training in animal shelters, and participating in many working dog disciplines and canine sports. Anneliese currently lives on a farm in rural Wisconsin with her family and two Great Danes: her current mobility service dog, and her retired mobility and syncope alert service dog.
Meet Pam Barker, DVM – Co-Author of the Service Dog Training Program
Born and raised in Alaska, Pam Barker earned her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from Washington State University, where she trained her first hearing assistance dog. She has also trained search dogs and been an instructor and behavior consultant. Her fields of interest include not only service dogs, but obedience and conformation, as well as racing sled dogs.
She enjoys all things outdoors, particularly riding her horse. She has published a thriller novel and is currently working on learning to play guitar. She lives with her husband, horse and two dogs in Texas, where she works as an exotic wildlife veterinarian.
Meet Sara Carson– Subject
Matter Expert of the Service Dog Training Program
Sara Carson of Ontario, Canada, began her career running her own dog training facility for 5 years in her hometown of North Bay. During that time Sara expanded her knowledge teaching obedience, puppy foundations, tricks and agility to the students who attended classes at her facility.
In 2013, Sara began working with her own service dog Hero while running a business training dogs for clients in Ontario. She quickly found her niche in teaching tricks and formulating simplified methods for teaching them to others. In the years following, Sara applied these formulas while traveling in the U.S. with various stunt dog performance circuits. Her tricks would go beyond entertainment, however. Her need for Hero’s medical assistance would inspire her to use these tricks and transform them into tasks for Hero to perform day to day.
Partnering with a veteran service dog organization, Sara launched into a new arena: training service dogs for veterans with various disabilities. Tricks became complex tasks for service dogs, such as a Labrador who learned to care for a quadriplegic veteran who needed full time tasking and care. Sara’s ability to simplify her teaching methods allowed her to create a trainer team that trained various dogs for veterans across the country.
Currently, she is living in Kentucky. Her plans are to continue her adventures around the globe with her dogs, performing and teaching dog owners and their pups. Sara wrote an instructional book in 2022 called Super Dog Tricks which can be find on a shelf near you!
How Much Does It Cost to Become an ABC Certified Service Dog Trainer?Tuition for our Service Dog Trainer Program ranges from
Support for Our Students
After you enroll, you will receive the contact information for your personal Program Manager. You will be learning from a service dog training professional who has real life working knowledge and experience. They will be there for you throughout your studies and to provide support, answer questions, and grade your exams.
Flexible Online Course & “Service Dog Training Near You”
ABC’s Service Dog Trainer Course is designed so you can keep your current job and still pursue your service dog training education. Your course materials and tests are all accessed online, meaning they are available 24/7 and you can learn from the comfort and safety of your own home. This allows you to study no matter where you are, giving you the flexibility to fit your education into your current lifestyle. The approximate completion time for our program is 8 months.
ABC Service Dog Trainer Certification
Upon successful completion of your Service Dog Trainer Course, you will receive your professional certification as an Animal Behavior College Certified Service Dog Trainer (ABCSDT). Your certification will help you stand out when interviewing for volunteer and employment opportunities at assistance dog organizations and facilities. This is your first step toward a career as a Service Dog Trainer! If you are not ready to progress into service dog training yet and need to learn the basics first, check out our Dog Trainer Program, which teaches you the fundamentals of becoming a dog trainer, here.
Please note: Animal Behavior College does not guarantee employment after graduation.
**Additional shipping and handling charges may apply.
Sources: 1: https://www.zippia.com/service-dog-trainer-jobs/salary/