Dog Behaviour & Training The Cambridge Institute of
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Click for informationThe Canine & Feline Behaviour Association is the professional voice of the Canine or Feline Behaviour practitioner, representing an unequalled body of knowledge concerning the care, training and behaviour of dogs and cats in the UK. Our members and associates are drawn from the top ranks of the profession with a common commitment to achieving, maintaining and directing the highest possible standards.

The CIDBT is actively engaged in various organisations in the UK and is a member of the Pet Education Training & Behaviour Council which help promote pet education for pet owners and dog and cat trainers, behaviour practitioners in their work. Our members and associates strive to promote new techniques in solving pet behaviour problems for the public. We have formed affiliations with like minded institutes to facilitate new training schemes and interlink our experts.

Careers in Canine or Feline Behaviour

Pet behaviour practitioners advise pet owners on dealing with specific control issues and problematic behaviour with their pet dogs or cats including: inappropriate noise, such as excessive barking aggression towards people or pets destructive behaviour toileting issues chasing livestock, cars or cyclists phobias.

As a pet behaviour practitioner most of your work is likely to be with dogs or cats. Your tasks would include: taking referrals from vets holding consultations in your own centre, in veterinary surgeries or in owners' homes talking to the owner and observe the dog or cat to get details of the problem analysing the nature of the problem and the likely causes drawing up a behaviour-modification programme for the owner to follow keeping in touch with owners to check progress adapting the modification programme if necessary. You might also offer a dog training service. You are likely to be self-employed, organising your own tax and insurance, and doing all the administrative tasks involved in running a business.

Entry Requirements for the CIDBT

Knowledge of the theory of dog or cat behaviour dog or cat-handling skills and experience. Knowledge and experience in working with dogs is important, as most of your work as a pet behaviour practitioner is likely to be with dogs. Courses in dog or cat behaviour vary in content, so it is important to choose training which will meet your needs. Some courses deal mainly with canine and feline behaviour, others with more general aspects of behaviour, possibly leading to careers involving the management, conservation and welfare of wild or captive pets.

As well as learning the theory of dog or cat behaviour, it is essential to have practical experience of working with pets. This could come from paid work, such as dog training or handling, or voluntary experience, for example in a kennels or veterinary surgery, or with an dog or cat welfare organisation. You can find out about opportunities for volunteering in your area.

Pet Behaviour practitioner

As you would usually be self-employed, you would decide your own working hours. However, you would need to fit in with clients' requirements, which could mean working evenings and weekends. You could be based in your own premises, in veterinary surgeons' clinics or visit owner's homes.

You may have to spend some time outside to observe pets. Although the work is rewarding, it can also be stressful and upsetting. For example, some of the pets you come across may have problems which cannot be modified because they are too deep seated or have a medical cause.

Practitioner Skills and Knowledge requirements

Pet behaviour Human Psychology Training and Development

Throughout your career, you will need to keep your skills and knowledge up to date, for example by attending workshops, seminars and conferences, and reading professional journals.


You can join the the Canine & Feline Behaviour Association at various levels depending on your qualifications and experience - see the Canine & Feline Behaviour Association websites for details. Full joining Criteria is at the CIDBT web site.

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Canine and Feline Behaviour Association

Pet Education, Behaviour and Training Council

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The Cambridge Institute of Dog Behaviour and Training is the education arm of the Canine and Feline Behaviour Association.

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The Canine & Feline Behaviour Association