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Career and Education Opportunities for Animal Trainers in Visalia, California

Visalia, California provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for animal trainers. About 3,800 people are currently employed as animal trainers in California. By 2016, this is expected to grow by 26% to about 4,800 people employed. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for animal trainers are expected to grow by about 20.4%. Animal trainers generally train animals for riding, harness, or obedience, or assisting persons with disabilities.

Income for animal trainers is about $13 per hour or $28,870 per year on average in California. Nationally, their income is about $13 hourly or $27,270 yearly. Compared with people working in the overall category of Animal Care, people working as animal trainers in California earn more. They earn more than people working in the overall category of Animal Care nationally.

The Visalia area is home to fifteen schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Visalia where you can get a degree as an animal trainer. The most common level of education for animal trainers is a high school diploma or GED. It will take only a short time to learn to be an animal trainer if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Animal Trainer

Animal Trainer video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, animal trainers train animals for riding, harness, or obedience, or assisting persons with disabilities. They also accustom animals to human voice and contact; and condition animals to respond to commands.

Animal trainers evaluate animals in order to establish their temperaments and aptitude for training. They also conduct training programs in order to develop desired animal behaviors for competition, entertainment, obedience, and riding. Equally important, animal trainers have to talk to and interact with animals so as to familiarize them to human voices and contact. They are often called upon to observe animals' physical conditions in order to uncover illness or unhealthy conditions requiring medical care. They are expected to feed and exercise animals, and furnish other general care such as cleaning and maintaining holding and performance areas. Finally, animal trainers advise animal owners regarding the purchase of specific animals.

Every day, animal trainers are expected to be able to evaluate problems as they arise. They need to articulate ideas and problems.

It is important for animal trainers to keep records documenting animal health and behavior. They are often called upon to administer prescribed medications to animals. They also cue or signal animals during performances. They are sometimes expected to place tack or harnesses on horses so as to accustom horses to the feel of equipment. Somewhat less frequently, animal trainers are also expected to manage mating of stallions and mares, and assist mares during foaling.

They also have to be able to train horses or other equines for riding or other work, using knowledge of breed characteristics and the peculiarities of each animal and use oral and/or hand commands so as to condition horses to carry riders or to pull horse-drawn equipment. And finally, they sometimes have to retrain horses to break bad habits, such as kicking and resisting bridling and grooming.

Like many other jobs, animal trainers must have exceptional integrity and be reliable.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Animal Trainer Training

College of the Sequoias - Visalia, CA

College of the Sequoias, 915 S Mooney Blvd, Visalia, CA 93277-2214. College of the Sequoias is a large college located in Visalia, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 12,500 students. College of the Sequoias has a one to two year and a two to four year program in Equestrian/Equine Studies which graduated one and zero students respectively in 2008.

CERTIFICATIONS

Certified Pet Dog Trainer: A trainer who has received the Certified Pet Dog Trainer credential has met eligibility requirements and has successfully demonstrated his or her knowledge by passing the certification exam.

For more information, see the Certification Council For Pet Dog Trainers website.

LICENSES

Instructor (Guide Dogs)

Licensing agency: Department of Consumer Affairs
Address: Board of Guide Dogs for the Blind, 400 R Street, Suite 5100-A, Sacramento, CA 95814

Phone: (916) 324-9328
Website: Department of Consumer Affairs Board of Guide Dogs for the Blind

Occupational Participants in Horse Racing License

Licensing agency: Department of Consumer Affairs
Address: California Horse Racing Board, 1010 Hurley Way, Suite 300, Sacramento, CA 95825

Phone: (916) 263-6000
Website: Department of Consumer Affairs California Horse Racing Board

LOCATION INFORMATION: Visalia, California

Visalia, California
Visalia, California photo by Capricorn90

Visalia is situated in Tulare County, California. It has a population of over 121,040, which has grown by 32.2% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Visalia, 87, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Visalia are valued at $200,400 on average, which is far less than the state average. In 2008, five hundred seventy-four new homes were constructed in Visalia, down from nine hundred twenty-seven the previous year.

The three most popular industries for women in Visalia are educational services, health care, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is public administration, construction, and educational services. The average travel time to work is about 19 minutes. More than 18.9% of Visalia residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 6.3%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Visalia is 10.0%, which is less than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Visalia residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 51.8%, is more than both the national and state average. Parkside Chapel Christian and Missionary Alliance Church, Grace Lutheran Church and Holy Family Roman Catholic Church are some of the churches located in Visalia. The most prominent religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Assemblies of God and the Southern Baptist Convention.

Visalia is home to the Tulare County Juvenile Hall and the Visalia Community Center as well as Pinkham Park and Lincoln Park. Shopping centers in the area include Fairway Shopping Center, Visalia Mall Shopping Center and Towne and Country Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Visalia can choose from Best Western Visalia Inn and Blacklakecondo for temporary stays in the area.