Animal Training Degree Job Opportunities

Find Career and Employment Opportunities in Animal Training

A degree or certificate in animal training might be right for a person that both loves animals and has a lot of patience. Possible career options in this field include animal breeders, horse trainers, and marine animal trainers.

Animal Training Degree Programs

Animal trainers work with show animals, companion animals, and animals to serve as guards. An animal training course will teach these potential professionals skills in:

  • Nutrition
  • Genetics
  • Animal behavior
  • Animal welfare
  • Basic animal commands

By choosing to specialize in training a certain animal, like horses, students will also need to take courses catered special to that type of animal. Working directly with the animals and watching professionals train them will also be helpful during the learning experience.

Animal Breeder Job Opportunities for Animal Training Degree Graduates

Animal breeders work with domesticated animals and livestock. Some animals are bred for certain temperaments and personalities, while others are bred for physical characteristics that make them desirable to sell or to show. Animal breeders carefully choose which animals they are going to breed and they research the pedigree and backgrounds of each animal. Animal breeders record animal characteristics including diets, patterns of growth, and weight. They may also exhibit animals at shows and work with veterinarians to obtain treatment for animals that obtain injuries or illnesses. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the annual median salary for animal breeders was $29,680 in 2009, but the employment outlook and number of available jobs is expected to decrease through 2014.

Marine Animal Trainer Job Opportunities for Animal Training Degree Graduates

Individuals employed as marine animal trainers will train animals like dolphins, seals, and whales how to perform tricks to star in shows. Trainers need to have good swimming skills in order to interact within animals within their tanks. Animal trainers observe the physical condition of animals in order to detect illnesses or conditions that may require medical care. They cue or signal animals during performances and provide positive or negative reinforcements. Opportunities for these professionals will find positions in aquariums, theme parks like Sea World, or with the military, which will sometimes use marine life to detect shallow water mines. Animal trainers earned a median annual salary of $26,930 in 2009, and this career field is expected to be strong through 2014.

Horse Trainer Job Opportunities for Animal Training Degree Graduates

Horse trainers train horses for a number of different purposes, but the main reason is for people to be able to ride them as pets or as show horses. Wild horses are generally afraid of people and need to be trained to trust humans, and the weight of a saddle and a person on a young horse is often confusing and takes a lot of practice. Horse trainers will evaluate animals to determine their aptitude for training, temperament, and abilities. They will also be responsible for feeding and exercising their trainees. Over time and with considerable training, horses can learn the verbal and non-verbal cues and commands given by their trainers. Like animal trainers, horse trainers earned a median annual salary of $26,930 in 2009, and this career field is expected to be strong through 2014.

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