Why Do I Need a Professional Dog Trainer Designation to Train Dogs?

By August 5, 2020Uncategorized

professional dog trainer designation, dog trainer academy, az dog smart, dog training phoenixWhy Should You Obtain a Professional Dog Trainer Designation?

In the last few decades, the field of dog training has changed considerably.  Working with dogs has evolved into more science-based methods by understanding how dogs learn best and by applying more positive teaching methods. This change of methodology has yielded better trained, more reliable and happy dogs and dog owners. Now more than ever, dog trainers are required to get a formal education and to get credentials in order to succeed in this field.

Obtaining a professional designation will provide you with the following:


Certifications will give you a stamp of approval.  Certified professionals have a proven level of knowledge and skill.  Certifications show that you meet the requirements of a professional organization and that you are serious about your career.


Employers are more likely to hire individuals that have the assessed knowledge that certifications provide.  A certification demonstrates that the person’s level of expertise is high.  Certified trainers are more likely to get better career opportunities and be more satisfied professionally than trainers who are not.

Better Income

Along with increased employment opportunities, professionals who hold a reputable certification have a better chance of making more money.  A Money Wise article of May 16, 2019 by Esther Trattner states, “A certification showing that you’ve gained job-specific skills and knowledge can substantially boost your bank account. The right certification can raise your pay by 50% or more.”


Clients look and trust trainers that have credentials.  Having a certification will boost your clientele pool.  People want to hire professionals who have the proven set of skills for their dogs.


Certification will strengthen your career, as you stay connected with the latest training, developments, employment opportunities and trends.  Access to professional networking will connect you with new clients and other professionals.

Now that we have established that holding a professional certification has many benefits, selecting the right one will require some research.  There are several things you should consider before spending the time and the money to earn a certificate. Keep in mind that certifications vary according to criteria. It is important that the organization has a good reputation, recognition in the industry and outreach programs to attract prospective employers in dog-oriented industries. You should also look for an organization that aligns with your core values and has a length of presence in the dog industry.

One of the leading national certifications in the country is the Certification Counsel for Professional Dog Trainer (CCPDT).

  1. The CCPDT is “the world’s largest independent testing and trade organization for dog trainers and dog behavior consultants.”
  2. It has a code of ethics which requires its certificants to maintain “quality and humane standards for dog training professionals.”
  3. Trainers are listed on the website, which has an international reach, and potential clients can use to find a local dog trainers.
  4. The CCPDT website lists resources for job opportunities and maintains a network of referral partners for veterinarians, vet techs, humane society, shelters, rescue groups, pet sitters, dog walkers, etc.

The training program at AZ Dog Smart (AZDS) Academy is designed to train future dog trainers who will adhere to all the guidelines of the CCPDT.  Classes are held both in the classroom as well as online.  The curriculum requires 3 mentorships and a minimum of 200 hours of hands-on training.  After completing the certification program at AZDS, students are strongly encouraged to obtain a CCPDT Certification.

Choosing a professional certification and meeting those qualifications is the fastest way to a better paying career in the industry.  It also ensures a level of professional ethics and exemplifies a standard of professional knowledge.

– Ida DeLeon

For more information about AZ Dog Smart Academy – Start Here


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