The Best Online Courses for Dog Trainers in 2023

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The dog training industry is competitive, but there are ways to stand out from the crowd. If you’re looking to grow your dog training business, a course or certification can help. The best part is that you can complete a dog training certification from the comfort of your own home and on your own schedule with online dog training courses. There are a lot of options out there to fit your market and philosophy as a dog trainer.

We put together a list of some of the most popular online courses for professional dog trainers.

Online dog trainer course

What’s the best online course for dog trainers? 

Dog training courses give you the tools and resources to grow a successful dog training business.  Dog trainers aren’t legally required to hold a certification or complete a course to run their business. But the highest-paid dog trainers hold some kind of training credential. You’ll get more bookings because clients can trust their pet is safe in your hands. Plus, with online dog training courses, it’s easier to earn your certification online.

Here are five institutions that offer online courses and certifications for dog trainers. 

#1 Karen Pryor Academy

The Karen Pryor Academy is a leader in Animal and Behaviour Training. It offers online training courses for dog professionals at any stage of their career, whether they’re looking for a foundational course to break into the industry or specialty courses to expand their service offers. 

The Karen Pryor Academy offers several online courses for professional dog trainers, including but not limited to the following: 

  • Dog Trainer Professional: This course takes a motivated trainer to the next level of their career. Through a mix of online theoretical learning and hands-on classes, you leave with knowledge and experience to work as a professional trainer.
  • Therapy Dog Team: Are you interested in working with service dogs? This course is all about learning the skills of therapy dogs and how they work to support people. It’s a good option whether you’re a pet owner or a dog trainer.
  • Puppy starts right for instructors: Puppy socialization classes are in high demand. This course can give you the tools you need to get in on the rewards. You’ll learn observation, training, and even marketing skills from experts in the puppy training field. 
  • Smart reinforcement: This specialty online course shows you how to train dogs without relying on food as reinforcements. You’ll see how to implement non-food reinforcers into a training regimen in a safe and effective way.
  • Shelter training and enhancements: If you’re hoping to put your dog training skills to use in animal shelters, this may be the course for you. You’ll gain tools and resources to manage stress and behavior problems for dogs in shelters and make a real difference in their life.

Karen Pryor Academy’s online dog training courses cost anywhere from $139 to $5,600. See their website for a full list of class offerings. 

#2 Penn Foster 

Penn Foster gives you all the tools to succeed as a professional dog trainer with its online  Dog Obedience Training Program. In this program:

  • You learn the basics of how canine’s senses function
  • You dive into dog behavior problems likely to come up with clients and get strategies to prevent that behavior
  • You learn about dog testing, dog breeds, and the role of the American Kennel Club in the dog training industry
  • You learn how to create a dog training program for your clients and how to make recommendations to modify their dog’s behavior

Penn Foster’s online dog training course is currently offered at $749. You should be able to complete this course in about eight months, but it is self-paced. It’s a good option whether you want to work as a trainer at a shelter team or launch your own dog training business.


The International School for Certified Dog Trainers offers a comprehensive online course to help you become a dog trainer. The ISCDT is committed to helping students on the path to a career they love. Students learn to handle both practical and emotional aspects of becoming a dog trainer, like behavioral challenges and client frustrations.

If you enroll, you receive:

  • 18 comprehensive online lesson plans. The self-paced modules provided an in-depth look at clicker training and problem-solving for aspiring dog trainers
  • High-quality example videos to support your dog training education. You see exactly how to perform techniques and correct certain behaviors. 
  • Homework assignments to keep you engaged and prepared throughout the course.
  • Hands-on experience, with interactive internships for first-hand knowledge of handling clients and dogs. 

Expect to pay at least $499 for an ISCDT dog training certification.

Online dog trainer course

#4 E-Training for Dogs 

E-Training for Dogs offers several online dog training certification programs through their school entity, International College of Canine Studies. They provide a mix of courses, certifications, and diploma programs, including:

  • Associate dog trainer
  • Canine Behaviour Consultant certificate
  • Professional online dog grooming certificate
  • Canine fitness program
  • Fitness and nutrition diploma
  • Pet loss companioning and hospice care
  • Training hearing dogs

Some of their courses may also count towards CEUs for other reputable dog training certifications. You get tools to expand your dog training experience and grow your business.

E-Training for Dog’s online courses can cost anywhere from $90 to $1800. See their website for more details.

#5 The Animal Behavior College

The Animal Behavior College allows you to earn your dog obedience instructor certification online. Their program teaches you how to handle unruly dogs and their frustrated owners. The ABC partners with The Association of Professional Dog Trainers. So, rest assured that you’ll receive comprehensive and reliable training techniques. 

The program offers: 

  • Online dog training courses on your schedule and where you need them
  • Hands-on training classes for real-world experience working with dogs.
  • Certification in Pet CPR and first aid 

More than learning to train a dog, this program arms you with skills to grow a dog training business, including tips on social media marketing, search engine optimization, and creating business forms. 

 ABC students can complete their studies from the comfort of their own homes and get hands-on client experience in their area. If you’re passionate about working with animals but not sure how to turn that dream into a reality, this may be the course for you!  

With your certification in hand, you can go on to work for dog training companies and shelters or start your own independent dog training business.

The ABC’s dog training program can cost anywhere from $2,995.00 to $5,647.

Online dog trainer course

Enroll Today

Online dog training courses are a convenient way to expand your training expertise and grow your business. Just make sure you choose a reputable program that fits in with your goals and your budget. 

PocketSuite wants to see you grow your dog training business. We have all the tools you need to schedule appointments and manage clients straight from your phone.