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Dog Trainer Careers

Do you consider yourself a dog whisperer? If you have a knack for getting along with dogs, then you may want to consider becoming a dog trainer. Dog trainers teach owners methods for training dogs to respond to commands and helping correct problem behaviors. They frequently work directly with owners, teaching them how to manage any undesired behaviors.

In order to successfully help both dog and owner, dog trainers assess their needs and then create a suitable training plan and a welcoming environment. To excel in this role, you'll need to be patient, consistent, and have excellent verbal and nonverbal skills.

Although most dog trainers are self-employed, some may work as part of a pet store's obedience training program. Other work opportunities may also exist at animal shelters, veterinary clinics, or boarding kennels. Generally, all that is required to be a dog trainer is a high school diploma or GED. Dog trainers should also be familiar with how to use operant conditioning, positive reinforcement, hand signals, and voice commands.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a dog trainer. For example, did you know that they make an average of $13.17 an hour? That's $27,386 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 16% and produce 51,700 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Dog Trainer Do

There are certain skills that many dog trainers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed customer-service skills, detail oriented and patience.

How To Become a Dog Trainer

If you're interested in becoming a dog trainer, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 39.7% of dog trainers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 2.9% of dog trainers have master's degrees. Even though some dog trainers have a college degree, it's possible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a dog trainer. When we researched the most common majors for a dog trainer, we found that they most commonly earn bachelor's degree degrees or high school diploma degrees. Other degrees that we often see on dog trainer resumes include associate degree degrees or diploma degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a dog trainer. In fact, many dog trainer jobs require experience in a role such as cashier. Meanwhile, many dog trainers also have previous career experience in roles such as sales associate or volunteer.

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Dog Trainer Career Paths

Top Careers Before Dog Trainer

17.1 %

Top Careers After Dog Trainer

11.3 %
8.0 %

Dog Trainer Jobs You Might Like

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Average Salary for a Dog Trainer

Dog Trainers in America make an average salary of $27,386 per year or $13 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $36,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $20,000 per year.
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Dog Trainer Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Dog Trainer. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Dog Trainer Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Dog Trainer resumes and compiled some information about how to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

View Dog Trainer Resume Examples And Templates

Dog Trainer Demographics



57.7 %


38.8 %


3.5 %



83.2 %

Hispanic or Latino

10.4 %

Black or African American

3.2 %

Foreign Languages Spoken


64.2 %


8.8 %


6.1 %
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Dog Trainer Education


12.9 %



39.7 %

High School Diploma

26.4 %


21.8 %
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Top Skills For a Dog Trainer

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 50.9% of dog trainers listed safe environment on their resume, but soft skills such as customer-service skills and detail oriented are important as well.

  • Safe Environment, 50.9%
  • Training Techniques, 31.1%
  • Animal Care, 5.8%
  • Customer Service, 2.2%
  • Behavioral Issues, 2.2%
  • Other Skills, 7.8%
  • See All Dog Trainer Skills

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Updated August 18, 2021