The Apprentice Program is a 20-hour per week, 14-week volunteer opportunity to learn more about dog training and behavior via observation of, and personalized tutoring from, the experienced behaviorists and training staff of the Academy of Canine Behavior.
The Academy looks at all Apprentice Program applicants as they would look at all future employees. Good communication skills, a strong desire to learn, ability to function well in a busy environment, initiative, and ingenuity are all important.
Hands on learning with a wide variety of dogs
A thorough foundation in behavior is vital when entering the world of dogs, whether your interest is in training the family pet or something more specialized. Careers range from training dogs to assisting the disabled, to police work, narcotics detection, show dog handling, field training, herding, competition obedience, protection training, agility, and much more. In each of these disciplines, understanding dog behavior increases your opportunity for true success.
The Apprentice Program gives you a hands-on opportunity to apply the dog behavior information you learn. Since we train dogs of all ages, breeds, temperaments, and problems, this could be a first step toward deciding if a career in dog training is for you. Others who benefit from the Apprentice Program include shelter personnel, pre-veterinarian students, veterinary technicians and assistants, groomers, and any pet owners with a desire to know more.
Potential to move into Full-Time Training
The program allows us to screen for potential trainers. The occasional openings for trainers that occur are first filled from the very best of our current or former apprentices. If your goal is to make a living training dogs and to learn from the very best, the Apprenticeship program is a good way to help us recognize your potential.
Note: Please fill out the Apprenticeship Application even if you feel you have the experience needed to go right into a full-time Training position.
Train dogs as assigned.
Work with dogs in all stages of learning and varying temperaments. Trainers are expected to be creative when they are working with difficult dogs and be able to work with other trainers on staff to come up with solutions on dogs that are not learning with traditional methods. Trainers are expected to ensure the dogs they are working are at the level they should be for the amount of time they have been here or to come up with a corrective action plan to get the dog where it needs to be.
Train owners on working with their dogs.
Trainers must be able to interact with customers on a one on one basis. They must be able to show the owners what their dogs know as well as how to work with their dogs. They must be able to work with all ages and levels of experience in owners in a professional manner. They need to be able to get the dog and owner to work as a team
Care of Primary Care dogs
Trainers are assigned primary care dogs. They must keep an eye on the dogs and regularly get the dogs weight, brush them out, clip nails, etc to keep them physically fit. They need to keep tabs on their training to make sure it is progressing regularly.
Additionally, they need to make initial contact with the owners within a day of the dog coming in and then to keep in contact with the owner as needed throughout the dogs stay.
Assistance to rest of facility
Cover the office when needed during lunch time. Answer phones during lunch and off lunch when possible and the front is busy. Help check dogs in and out. Answer questions about training and our Board and Train program over the phone and in person. Let office know when forms are getting low or make copies if they have time. Assist kennel with difficult dogs during the day (bathing, moving, coming in, going home, feeding). Work with kennel on training dogs to ensure that everything is going smoothly.
Our Senior Trainer title is reserved for those Trainers who have proven themselves as capable of dealing with any behavior issue presented to them. They have been working as a Trainer with us for atleast 2 years and are able to work with those dogs labeled as "Dangerous" or "Potentially Dangerous" by the State.