Become a certified dog trainer in just a few months with in-person training, personalized attention and career mentorship

Earn the area's most comprehensive dog training
certification
and put yourself ahead of the competition

Fast-track your way to a professional dog training career in the pet industry

Attend classes (limited to 15 students) at our St. Louis campus 3 or 5 times a week

Get job placement assistance, as well as access to resources for starting your own dog training business

apc google rating
apc facebook rating

Learn how to launch
your dog training career
in as few as 50 days

Complete the form below to receive a free guide about our programs.

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Classes are filled on a first come,
first serve basis. Limited spots are available.

In-person dog training school in Missouri

The dog training school at The Academy of Pet Careers offers a range of professional dog training courses and certifications, depending on your career goals. We teach basic obedience to get you started, or advanced techniques to give you a competitive advantage in the industry.

Our focus is different because we not only help you become a dog trainer, we show you how to find your "fur-ever" career. With our courses, your career goals come first. Whether you want to work for someone else or start your own pet business, we have options for you.

basic obedience icon

Learn basic and advanced obedience
skills and troubleshooting problems

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Understand canine body language
and how to effectively communicate

service dog icon

Specialize your skills in
Service Dog Work or Scent Detection

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Learn through reward-based,
force-free methodology of training

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Why hundres of students have
trusted The Academy of Pet Careers
to launch their dog training career

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Hands-on learning

This program is hands-on and simulates a real working
environment
, ensuring you can jump right into the industry from
Day 1.

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Small class sizes

You get one-on-one attention from instructors and career-specific
guidance that sets you up for success
.

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Modern & optimized curriculum

We constantly update and revise our curriculum in accordance with
the trends and demands in the pet industry.

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Financial aid

We are approved by many organizations to help with school
expenses. Our admissions team helps you through the application
process.

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Dual certifications

We are the only dog training school that offers multiple pet studies and dual certifications giving you added job stability and increased income potential.

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You are set up for success

Our programs are designed to set the students up for success. We focus on teaching you the skills you need to excel in your desired field.

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Job assistance

We connect you with businesses needing dog trainers. So most graduates are hired shortly after getting their certification.

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Job ready in 3-5 months

This program is designed to move fast and give you valuable hands-on experience. Once complete, you're ready to immediately use your new skills in the industry.

Walking Dog

What our certified graduates say
about their training at The Academy of Pet Careers

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It is great to get hands-on experience learning how
to teach the dogs in a positive way. It is nice with both
teachers dividing their attention answering any
questions we have and getting help from highly
experienced professionals. I recommend this school
to everyone who is interested in learning
how to train dogs.

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img-testimonial-Ellie

Ellie Buntenbach

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I graduated from Training, Grooming, and PEP.
I use the skills I learned at the APC ever single day.
The training portion of the school is well worth the
money. The instructors are the best kind of people.
They are patient and kind and make sure you truly
understand how to train, the process of how
they learn, different techniques, etc. The grooming
portion is good too. I have my own successful
business now, and part of that is because of the APC.
If you are considering a career in this field this is a good place to see if training or grooming is your passion.
I sure found mine! Also, the administrative people are great. Very helpful and made everything as easy as possible.
I made a lot of friends here and it has opened a lot of doors for me and my business, Medlin Pet Company.

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img-testimonial-Taylor

Taylor Rose Medlin

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During my time at The Academy of Pet Careers,
I had the opportunity to work hands on with dogs and
learn how to communicate with pet parents. Working
hands on with different breeds, ages and behavior
types allows you to learn how to train all dogs
and gain invaluable experience. I would highly
recommend this school to anyone interested in dog
training, dog behavior, or working with animals.

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img-testimonial-Toni

Toni Alaimo

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Wages and employment outlook for dog trainers

In recent years, dog trainers have seen increasing demand for their services. This career path provides
several perks, such as flexible hours, options for specialization and, if desired, the ability to be your own boss.

2,900

Active dog trainer job postings
in 2021 according to Glassdoor

$35,451

Average dog trainer salary

13%

Projected job growth for dog
trainers until 2029

This certification gives you the skills and industry
experience to excel in a dog training career

Professional Dog Trainer Program

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A Trainer's Toolkit

30+ Basic & Intermediate Skills

Basic Tricks

Luring/Shaping/Capturing

Troubleshooting & Skill Maintenance

Solving Problem Unwanted Behaviors

Creating a Training Plan

Group Class Instruction

Client Evaluation & Communication

Starting a Training Business

Learning Theory

Canine Communication

Canine Body language

Pet Safety & Enrichment

Canine Good Citizen (CGC)

Pet CPR & First Aid

I highly recommend studying professional training at The Academy of Pet Careers! It is a lot of hands-on which is very helpful. The teachers and staff are so amazing and you can almost pretty much make your own schedule. You can go to school and still have a job and the staff is very understanding about your goals.

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Katarina Ziegler

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I absolutely love attending school here! I am a student in their dog training program at the moment. Everyone is very kind and welcoming and Jody is an outstanding Teacher! I could not imagine a better place to learn about something I'm so passionate about.

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Cassie Christensen

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Specialized Dog Trainer Program

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Everything In Professional Trainer

Formal & Advanced Training Skills

Advanced (Chained) Tricks

Husbandry Skills

Nose Work & Scent Discrimination

Mobility Service Dog Skills

Psychiatric Service Dog Skills

Public Access Testing

Professional Dog Trainer Program

A Trainer's Toolkit

30+ Basic & Intermediate Skills

Basic Tricks

Luring/Shaping/Capturing

Troubleshooting & Skill Maintenance

Solving Problem Unwanted Behaviors

Creating a Training Plan

Group Class Instruction

Client Evaluation & Communication

Starting a Training Business

Learning Theory

Canine Communication

Canine Body language

Pet Safety & Enrichment

Canine Good Citizen (CGC)

Pet CPR & First Aid

icon-certificationdogtraining-facebook-review

I highly recommend studying professional training at The Academy of Pet Careers! It is a lot of hands-on which is very helpful. The teachers and staff are so amazing and you can almost pretty much make your own schedule. You can go to school and still have a job and the staff is very understanding about your goals.

img-testimonial-Katarina

Katarina Ziegler

Specialized Dog Trainer Program

Everything In Professional Trainer

Formal & Advanced Training Skills

Advanced (Chained) Tricks

Husbandry Skills

Nose Work & Scent Discrimination

Mobility Service Dog Skills

Psychiatric Service Dog Skills

Public Access Testing

icon-certificationdogtraining-facebook-review

I absolutely love attending school here! I am a student in their dog training program at the moment. Everyone is very kind and welcoming and Jody is an outstanding Teacher! I could not imagine a better place to learn about something I'm so passionate about.

img-testimonial-Cassie

Cassie Christensen

Teaching Tuck

The advantages you gain
with hands-on dog training

Hands-on courses are more personalized and comprehensive offering maximum value for your time.

Live courses can be customized to your learning style. Everybody learns at their own pace and we make sure no one is left behind. 

You learn from experienced professionals in the industry who know how to teach and help you succeed.

They are more fun! You learn in a positive and friendly environment that consists of dog lovers such as yourself.

This hands-on dog training
program is for you if:

You want to turn your passion and love for animals into a profitable career. Leadership positions in the industry pay anywhere from $30,000 to $100,000, depending on their role.

Your goal is a fun, stable, and versatile career. These skills enable you to work in fields such as service dog training, scent detection, and competitive obedience.

You want to land an exciting job as a dog trainer. Since we connect you with businesses needing dog trainers, most graduates are hired shortly after getting their certification.

You want to start a dog training business. We provide you with pet-specific knowledge and give you access to the resources needed to create a successful dog training business.

Training Student Lecture

Mission & Vision

Joseph Schifano Icon

Joseph Schifano

Owner/President

The pet care industry in in high demand for qualified pet professionals. It is ever changing, and pets are treated more than ever as a part of the family. Therefore, calmness, and a gentle touch are key if you want to succeed as a pet professional.

At The Academy of Pet Careers, our mission is to empower pets and the people that care for them. After 25 years in the industry, we are proud that our students have been consistently getting hired by notable companies that work with pets, and many of them have started successful pet businesses themselves! So, we want nothing more than for you to thrive in a career you'll love. Our curriculum was designed to make you more desirable to employers and to set you up for success by only teaching you the most modern techniques and methodologies. The only limit to your success will be your ambition!

Frequently Asked Questions

The APC has funding options available to students that are eligible. Our students may be eligible for tuition assistance through certain government grant programs (does not include FASFA loans) as well as payment plans and scholarships through the APC. Contact our admissions director for more information.

We are located only 30 minutes from downtown St. Louis. Our facilities are conveniently located in St. Charles, MO right off Interstate 70, minutes from food, parks, and entertainment.

We offer two options for housing and both are located in St. Charles, Missouri. Housing is furnished with private rooms. Living areas are shared with other APC Students. The cost per week for housing is $175 for Off-Campus House and $225 for Apartments (other fees may apply). Students enrolled in a Training program are allowed to have dogs in housing with them. These options fill up quickly so apply your deposit to lock in your room.

Yes, in addition to full-time options, part-time enrollment is offered in all training and grooming programs (vet assistant programs must be attended full-time). Part-time is offered as a fixed 3-day per week schedule and may be different for each program. Combining a 3-day schedule and short class days allows many students to work while enrolled in school.

We offer monthly, open enrollment for Grooming and Training! You may begin class on the first week of each month throughout the year as long as our class capacity allows.

Veterinary assistant classes are on a Semester schedule with start dates available 2 times each year, in the spring and fall.

We offer small class sizes to ensure a better student to teacher ratio. Start date will only be held once application, contract and deposit are submitted.

Equipment must be purchased through the APC. We have designed our equipment packages around each specific program. The equipment packages provide you with all the basic equipment needed to begin your career as a professional. Packages are given out on the first day of school.

Our training school requires you to have at least 1 dog to attend class. These dogs will be your demo dogs when you graduate and begin work as a trainer. If you need dogs or think your dog would not be a good fit, you will need to find one for the program. We have rescues and shelters that we recommend.

The APC provides all dogs needed to go through the grooming and veterinary school, but some students may choose to bring their own to practice specific modules.

You can begin the enrollment process any time but we recommend beginning after a school visit. The first step is completing the Student Enrollment Application with all necessary attachments and paying your $50 application fee. If accepted, you will receive notice from our admissions department. The next step to enroll is to pay your $900 deposit and sign your Course Contract. This is what with lock in your start date and program.

YES! We have employers from all over the country that ask for our graduates. We will help you find the right fit in this industry and get you in contact with as many options as possible. In addition, we have resources to prepare your resume and interviewing skills too! New jobs are posted regularly. To check out opportunities in your area, visit our Job Board.

Our money back guarantee is also known as our “drop window”. It is a 14 calendar-day period at the beginning of their program, that allows students to be sure that they have picked out the most perfect program.

We are so sure that you will be happy with your schooling that we offer a “Money Back Guarantee” to ensure your satisfaction. If for any reason you wish to discontinue your attendance at the APC, a refund will be issued with no questions asked.

Become a certified dog trainer in just a few months with in-person training, personalized attention and career mentorship

Earn the area's most comprehensive dog training
certification
and put yourself ahead of the competition

Fast-track your way to a professional dog training career in the pet industry

Attend classes (limited to 15 students) at our St. Louis campus 3 or 5 times a week

Get job placement assistance, as well as access to resources for starting your own dog training business

apc google rating
apc facebook rating

Learn how to launch
your dog training career
in as few as 50 days

Complete the form below to receive a free
guide about our programs.

  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden
  • Hidden

Classes are filled on a first come,
first serve basis. Limited spots are available.