The Service Dog Academy is in constant need of assistant trainers to help before, during and after classes.
In order to qualify for the position you must already have extensive schooling/training in the methodology we use to train our dogs (no dominance methods allowed). Teaching or assisting experience is not required but highly desirable. A desire to learn about service dogs and how to train them is extremely important. An understanding and compassion for people with disabilities is a must. Class time spent assisting can be used as hours towards your CPDT.
Duties for Service Dog Academy Assistant
You must be available and ready to work at least 15 minutes prior to and after your scheduled classes and field trips.
- Set up the room for students with at least a leash length of space between stations.
- Set up reactive dog stations with gates and blankets.
- Help students to their seats. Do not let the dogs greet each other.
- Set up product table.
- Cut up treats.
- Make sure floor is clean.
- Fill up dog water bowls.
- Locate and line up instructional tools to be used in lesson (wheelchairs, crutches, skateboards, squeaky toys, etc.)
- After explanation and demo, work your way around the room assisting students with the exercise.
- Rather than showing them how to do the exercise by taking their dog, walk them through the exercise step by step. Its doubly important to remember to use positive reinforcement methods on the human part of the equation, they are the ones paying for the class!
- Assist students whose dogs are noisy during class!
- Before assisting a dog, ask owner to take off their dogs vest if they are wearing one.
- Ideas for distracting a noisy dog include providing a Peanut butter or Cheese Whiz-stuffed Kong, playing the name game, “touch”, “say hi”, putting up the reactive dog barrier and/or working on basic commands quietly.
- Again, help the student learn how to keep their dog focused and quiet rather than doing it for them.
- Clean up any “accidents” using sanitizer and paper towels.
- Clean up any dropped food left on the floor.
- Clean out Kongs and empty water bowls.
- Pack supplies away at the end of class and load into instructors car.
- Put away any instructional aids.
- Put chairs back on their risers.
- Sweep floor.
Although the position is currently UNPAID it has great potential for advancement into a paid position. If you would like to apply for the position please fill out the information below.