Dog Handlers and Trainers
Dog Handlers or Trainers teach dogs to obey commands and undertake specific tasks.
Teaches animals to obey verbal and non-verbal commands and addresses behavioural problems.
Trains animals to perform in competitions.
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
Informal or on-the-job
JSA produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. Employment projections data are only produced for occupations at the broad four digit Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) level. While data are not available for this occupation, projections data are available for the parent occupation, Animal Attendants and Trainers, under the outlook section.
Earnings and hours
Around 59% of people employed as Dog Handlers and Trainers work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 7 percentage points below the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 48 hours per week in their main job. This is 4 hours more than the all jobs average (44 hours per week).
Sources:Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average.
Dog Handlers and Trainers work in industries like:
- Other services
- Public administration and safety
- Arts and recreation services
- Health care and social assistance.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Dog Handlers and Trainers||All Jobs Average|
Around 47% of Dog Handlers and Trainers live outside of capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 38%.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian states, territories and regions, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age and gender
The median age of Dog Handlers and Trainers is 40 years. This is the same as the all jobs average.
A large share of workers are aged 25 to 34 years.
Females make up 59% of the workforce. This is 11 percentage points above the all jobs average of 48%.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.
Age Profile (% Share)
|Age Bracket||Dog Handlers and Trainers||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||3.0||4.2|
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Education, training and experience
Formal qualifications are not essential to work as a Dog Handler or Trainer. Although some workers have a Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualification in dog training.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Animal Care and Management VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Dog Handlers and Trainers||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||3.9||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||15.2||12.5|
Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Skills and Knowledge
Employers look for Animal Attendants and Trainers who are reliable, work well in a team and have a strong work ethic.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
Teaching people how to do something.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
Reading work related information.
Talking to others.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
43%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
Looking for ways to help people.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
41%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
Talking people into changing their minds or their behaviour.
39%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect it.
Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.
36%Management of personnel resources
Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, and choosing the best people for the job.
Bringing people together and trying to sort out their differences.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
62%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
60%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
42%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
40%Sales and marketing
Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
36%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
34%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
31%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
31%Economics and accounting
Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.
31%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
30%Therapy and counselling
Diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and career counselling and guidance.
Plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, how they rely on and work with each other and the environment.
30%Sociology and anthropology
Group behaviour and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
29%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
27%Medicine and dentistry
Diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities, including preventive health-care measures.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
22%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
Communicate by speaking.
Listen to and understand what people say.
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
Come up with unusual or clever ideas, or creative ways to solve a problem.
Come up with a number of ideas about a topic, even if the ideas aren't very good.
See details that are far away.
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
43%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Speak clearly so others can understand you.
Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.
Use your abdominal and lower back muscles a number of times without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
Read and understand written information.
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
Identify and understand the speech of another person.
41%Whole body coordination
Move your arms, legs, and body together.
Exercise for a long time without getting winded or out of breath.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
74%Doing physically active work
Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.
71%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
70%Building good relationships
Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.
69%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
Using your own ideas for developing, designing, or creating something new.
68%Communicating with the public
Giving information to the public, business or government by telephone, in writing, or in person.
67%Working with the public
Greeting or serving customers, clients or guests, and public speaking or performing.
66%Training and teaching others
Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.
64%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
60%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
58%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
58%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
57%Giving expert advice
Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups.
57%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
55%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
54%Coaching and developing others
Working out the needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or helping them to improve.
Convincing people to buy something or to change their minds or actions.
52%Coming up with systems and processes
Deciding on goals and figuring out what you need to do to achieve them.
49%Explaining things to people
Helping people to understand and use information.
47%Documenting or recording information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
Interests and demands
Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.
Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.
Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.
Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.
96%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
Talk with people face-to-face.
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
86%Spend time standing
Spend time standing at work.
85%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
84%Outdoors, exposed to weather
Work outdoors, exposed to the weather.
Talk on the telephone.
80%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
78%Contact with the public
Work with customers or the public.
Use electronic mail.
75%Lead or coordinate a team
Lead others to do work activities.
74%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
73%Walking and running
Spend time walking and running.
Work with people in a group or team.
72%Health and safety of others
Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.
70%Outdoors, under cover
Work outdoors, under cover (e.g., in an open shed).
70%Physically close to people
Work physically close to other people.
70%Very hot or cold temperatures
Work in very hot or cold temperatures.
69%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
68%Making repetitive motions
Spend time making repetitive motions.
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 39-2011.00 - Animal Trainers.
Links and downloads
Research and reports
The Skills Priority List provides a current labour market rating and a future demand rating for nearly 800 occupations nationally. Current labour market ratings are available for occupations at a state and territory level.
Occupation profiles data are available for download.
The Employment Projections are available for download.