This course may be taken for personal interest, or as one of the prerequisites for entry into the Animal Control Certificate Program. Details of the course may be found in the course description.

Professional training for regulatory and enforcement officers

NEXT INTAKE: May  8-13, 2017

Now accepting applications / Application Deadline extended to April 7, 2017

Earn a Langara College CS certificate in the field of Animal Control.  The first public post-secondary institution in BC to offer training in this area.

Langara College Continuing Studies Animal Control Basic Training program is designed to assist the animal control profession, and to advance the knowledge, techniques, ethics, and attitudes of those who work in this field.

The program curriculum was created with industry input ensuring that the knowledge and skills you gain are relevant to your job. Receive a strong practical and theoretical foundation for understanding the physical and behavioural aspects of companion animals; the controlling, restraint, and apprehension of animals; animal welfare and abuse; a practical overview of legislation, investigation, note-taking, and court proceedings with respect to animals; and the fundamentals of effective interaction with animal owners.  Langara instructors and guest speakers who are currently working in the industry, or have previous industry knowledge will share their knowledge and experience.  Certificate program includes:

  • Animal Control Industry Perspective
  • Animal Identification                    
  • Companion Animal Behaviour
  • Humane Care and Treatment of Animals
  • Investigative Process & Techniques
  • Animal Specific Legislation
  • Safety Skills and Procedures
  • Field Activities and Practices
  • Community Engagement (on-line course completed after in-class portion)


Application to the Animal Control Basic Training Program, 19 years of age or older; Fluency in written and spoken English1, and

    • Current or past employment (1 year experience minimum) as an Animal Control Officer, Bylaw Officer, or equivalent law or enforcement official and
    • Employer authorization (see application)


  • OPTION TWO (required pre-requisites - must have all three to apply) 
    • The Langara one-day course "Introduction to Animal Control", and
    • A minimum of 2 documented Animal Control officer and/or a SPCA Officer ride-alongs (shadowing) within the last 6 months (or equivalent experience); and
    • Successful completion of JIBC Bylaw Level 1 (or equivalent).

[1] Grade 12 English recommended or equivalent language skills: LET with a minimum level 3; LPI with a minimum 26 on the essay and 5 in English usage, 5 in sentence structure, or 10 in reading comprehension or equivalent.

Admission Process

Before registering for this program, please read the full application form and information guide. Students must meet the required prerequisites and obtain employer approval (if required), as outlined on the application form. The application form must be completed in its entirety, and submitted prior to the identified deadline. Submit your completed application, documentation, application fee, and program fees to Langara College Continuing Studies via mail, fax or email – attention Karen Ramsden. Details on the application form. Program may fill in advance of application deadline. You are encouraged to complete your application as early as possible. Seats are limited and assigned as prerequistes are met, and on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Program Location, Dates, and Times

The college campus is situated approximately mid-way between the Vancouver International Airport and downtown Vancouver, just off of Cambie Street and is easily accessible via public transportation and the Canada Line.

Current Intake:

  • Location: Langara College Main Campus
  • Dates: May 8-13, 2017
  • Days: Mon-Sat (see note below)
  • Times: 8:30 am - 5:30 pm
  • Note: Exam may be taken in-class on the Saturday upon course completion, or proctored at your agency location within one week of completion of in-class sessions. Additional on-line course to be completed within 6 weeks of in-class program. Dates and assignment information to be provided in class.


  • Application fee: $40
  • Program fee: $1,449 (Includes: manual, handouts, morning beverages, and on-line course). A 10% discount available if paid in full by March 1, 2017
  • Additional costs: Students are expected to cover all transportation, meals, and hotel costs.
  • Cancellation/refund policy may be found on this webpage

Transportation and Accommodations

There are many hotels in the Vancouver/Richmond area that are easily accessible to the College, the airport and the highways. The Canada line is part of the rapid transit system in Vancouver that runs directly past both Langara College Vancouver campuses and is the recommended form of transportation to the College. Government rates are typically offered at most hotels, and may be the best rate available for you to inquire about when booking your accommodations.

Evaluation and Certification.

To earn the Animal Control Basic Training Certificate, students must complete a total of 60 hours; 40 in-class instructional hours, plus approximately 20 hours of reading and/or online studies. Students must attend the complete program, achieve a pass-grade of 70% or greater on the final written exam (containing both multiple choice and open ended questions), obtain a satisfactory grade on the practical components, and successfully complete and a pass on the on-line course (Community Engagement).

Dress Code

Comfortable clothing is recommended for Days 1-4. Duty clothes are requested on Day 5.

See ACBT Curriculum Tab for course details

Notes: See ACBT Curriculum Tab for course details

Courses may be taken individually for personal interest, or collectively towards a certificate.

Whether you are a dog owner or a canine caregiver, this 24 hour intensive program provides you with the essential components of dog walking.  Learn from a practicing Animal Behaviourist and welfare scientist. Instruction includes specific dog handling techniques, pet first-aid, legislation and by-laws and how to run a dog walking business. Students are introduced to animal learning, dog behavior, and science-based concepts of canine behavior change. Test this knowledge in a practical workshop. Discover that there is more than just loving dogs and holding a leash to being successful; there is a protocol to ensure that dog handlers conduct themselves in a professional manner, one that is respectful of the dogs in their care, other park/street users, and the environment.

Program Highlights

  • 24 hour program
  • Courses may be taken individually or collectively towards a certificate
  • Professional instruction by qualified Clinical Animal Behaviourist, and additional industry experts

Admission Requirements

  • 19 years of age and older
  • Fluency in written and spoken english
  • Practical component: Physical ability to assist dogs


All six courses plus the exam are required for certificate completion, however registration is open for all courses as long as the prerequisites are met.

1)      Typical Dog Behaviour
2)      Difficult Dog Behaviour
3)      City Bylaws and Dogs
4)      How to Run a Dog Walking Business
5)      Dog First-Aid
6)      Dog Walking - Practical

Program Costs:

  • $604.00 (includes all six courses and the exam)
  • Individual courses starting at $78
  • Employer group discounts available


Program is offered in the Spring and Fall (sometimes a Summer offering may also be available). View current courses available for registration

Certificate Requirements

Registration is course by course as long as prerequisites are met. Upon successful completion of all six courses plus the exam, students may apply for the Professional Dog Walker – Level 1 certificate. All requirements must be completed within one year of starting the program. 

Advanced Level:

Once you have completed the Langara Professional Dog Walking – Level 1 Certificate, you may take your qualifications to the next level with the Advanced Dog Walking Professional program. Details for this program can be found on this page.  


The  Advanced Dog Walking Certificate Program will no longer be offerred after the May-June 2017 course offerings. To ensure you obtain all remaining credits, or to achieve this advanced level certificate, please be sure to enrol in ALL courses that are offered this term as there will be no further opportunity to complete these requirements.

For more information, please email


The  Advanced Dog Walking Certificate Program will no longer be offerred after the May-June 2017 course offerings. To ensure you obtain all remaining credits, or to achieve this advanced level certificate, please be sure to enrol in ALL courses that are offered this term as there will be no further opportunity to complete these requirements. Courses are  now open for registration. View schedule

Build on your existing skills as a dog walker, and take your qualifications to the next level with this advanced program. 

Discover Langara’s professional development series for dog walkers. Reinforce your current learning, introduce new research and techniques to your skills, and broaden your perspective of the industry. Earn a certificate that provides the confidence dog owners seek.

Graduates will be at an advantage when compared to others in the industry as they will have both theoretical and practical preparation taught by industry professionals. 

This program provides a level of education beyond the basic understanding of dog walking, and details the skills and ability needed to be both effective in this industry and successful as a conscientious pet owner.

Content will include a further understanding of anxiety, arousal and reactivity and what typically brings on these tendencies. Physiological basis to behavioural problems in dogs will be examined as well managing these various behavioural problems.  Students will learn the difference between positive versus negative training methods and how to utilize the correct techniques in specific situations and other hands-on training techniques for dog walkers will be explored. The practical component provides an opportunity to recognize and implement learned tools in a real-life environment; observing and practicing with dogs on walks, in groups, and in stimulated environments. Intervention & safety during dog fights will also be reviewed.

Beyond behavior and training, students will be required to do a more in-depth examination of legislation and how this will affects them as a dog owner, dog walker, and business operator. Students will also be provided  with the operational aspects of running and marketing this unique business including the tools to better understand how to run a dog walking business. Topics examined will include becoming bonded, licensing and insurance, bookkeeping fundamentals, developing a marketing plan that includes: personal and niche marketing, social media, community involvement, customer communication, and additional continuing education options.  

Inquire about an Advanced Dog Walker Certificate. Email for dates and details.


Admission Requirements

  • 19 years of age and older
  • Fluency in written and spoken english
  • Practical component: Physical ability to assist dogs
  • Prerequisites as outlined in some course description

Professional Development series:

  1. Advanced Dog Behaviour (12 hours)  
  2. Cooperative Dog Training  (10 hours)        
  3. Keeping Dogs Safe  (4 hours) 
  4. Legislation: Beyond the Community  (4 hours) 
  5. Growing Your Dog Walking Business (6 hours)

Program Costs:

  • Individual courses starting at $119
  • Employer group discounts available


  • The last offerings of the courses in this certificate program are available May-June 2017
  • Courses may be offered weekends and/or evenings.
  • View currently available courses.

All courses in the Professional Dog Walking series  may be taken for general interest, or combined towards a certificate. Please view course offerings under those programs.  For more information contact