Canine Sports Training

Canine Sports Training

ABI 234  R

Canine Training

ABI 264  R

Training the Canine Athlete

ABI 271  R

Canine Behavior & Enrichment

ABI 274  R

Canine Scent Work

ABI 312  R

Canine Health & Nutrition

R = required    E = elective

Canine Sports Training

Certificate Program (15 credits)

Canine sports are an increasingly important component of professional dog training. Traditional canine sports, such as agility and obedience rallies, have experienced explosive growth over the last two decades; innumerable new sports have also arisen. The Canine Sports Training program provides you with a thorough knowledge of athletic training and conditioning techniques for dogs. You’ll build a fundamental skill set used in training a wide array of specific canine sports. Sports work can be enormously beneficial to dogs; it can also provide you with an opportunity to expand your business beyond obedience training.


  • Create a multi-step training plan using shaping or chaining to train complex tasks.
  • Put canine behavior on cue.
  • Understand canine communication and body language to more effectively train dogs.
  • Create appropriate diets for athletic dogs undergoing training.
  • Create a training schedule to promote overall health.
  • Recognize the symptoms of stress that can lead to injury and how to address them.
  • Train a dog to recognize specific scents and to discriminate between similar scents.
  • Create a strength and conditioning program for canine athletes.
  • Build multiple behavioral chains for use in canine sports.
  • Reliably communicate with dogs over longer distances.
  • Train dogs to work comfortably in novel situations and environments.

The Canine Sports Training certificate requires the completion of five online courses (15 academic credits) and a field requirement consisting of 40 hours of hands-on experience as an employee, intern or volunteer at an approved institution of your choice. Field hours for the Advanced Canine Training program, the Canine Training & Behavior program, or the Service & Therapy Dog Training program can be used towards this program as well.

The required courses for this certificate program are:

  1. ABI 234  Canine Training
  2. ABI 264  Training the Canine Athlete
  3. ABI 271  Canine Behavior & Enrichment
  4. ABI 274  Canine Scent Work
  5. ABI 312  Canine Health & Nutrition

Upon graduation, students may begin using the designation CCSTP, Certified Canine Sports Training Professional. Many of our graduates start their own businesses after obtaining their certificate, working as independent dog trainers and behavioral consultants. Other graduates find work in kennels, animal shelters, veterinary practices, animal control agencies, sanctuaries or other dog-related organizations. The animal care and service industry, which includes dog trainers, is expected to grow at 15% over the next decade. Opportunities in training have never been greater!

Our program in Canine Sports Training is unlike any other distance education program. Students at the Animal Behavior Institute participate in a highly interactive online classroom, engaging in regular dialog with their professors and student colleagues. Students receive feedback each week, working on collaborative projects while training their own animals. This allows them to achieve a deeper level of understanding than they would develop on their own. This collaboration, coupled with the mentoring each student receives from their instructors, ensures that they receive a very personal education.

Tuition is $1,320 per course; The cost of the certificate program is $6,600 (this does not include the cost of textbooks, purchased separately). Tuition assistance is available via interest-free financing.  If you have questions on the program, or need help getting started, please contact us at (866) 755-0448 or via email at [email protected].

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