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Top 10 Kennel Technician Certifications

This article will provide an overview of the top kennel technician certifications available to help pet owners find the best option for their needs.

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Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 17 min read

Certifications for a kennel technician are important in the job market because they demonstrate to employers and clients that the technician has a certain level of knowledge and experience that is necessary for proper care of animals. Certifications also provide assurance to employers, clients, and pet owners that the technician is following professional standards and guidelines when caring for animals. Additionally, certifications can be beneficial in helping technicians stand out from other candidates when applying for jobs or promotions. Finally, certifications may be required by law or regulation in some areas, so having them can open up more job opportunities.

This article reviews the top certifications for Kennel Technicians and explains how they can help to advance a kennel technician's career.

What are Kennel Technician Certifications?

Kennel technician certification is a certification program designed to provide individuals with the knowledge and skills necessary for providing care for animals in a kennel environment. The program covers topics such as animal health, nutrition, safety, handling, and other aspects of kennel management. It also provides instruction on how to properly identify and administer medications, perform basic first aid procedures, maintain records, and provide customer service.

Having a kennel technician certification can be beneficial for those looking to work at an animal shelter or veterinary clinic. It shows potential employers that the individual has knowledge of the proper care and handling of animals in a kennel setting. This certification can also help open up job opportunities within the animal care industry since many employers prefer to hire employees with some type of formal training or certification. Additionally, having this certification can increase an individual’s salary potential since it demonstrates expertise in the field. Finally, having a kennel technician certification can provide individuals with a sense of pride in their profession by showing that they are well-trained professionals who are committed to providing quality care for animals in their care.

Pro Tip: Take advantage of online kennel technician certification programs to gain valuable knowledge and skills in animal care. These programs are often self-paced and provide comprehensive instruction on topics such as nutrition, health and safety, animal behavior, and handling techniques. Additionally, many programs offer hands-on experience with real animals so that you can practice what you have learned.

Related: What does a Kennel Technician do?

Top 10 Kennel Technician Certifications

Here’s our list of the best certifications available to Kennel Technicians today.

1. Certified Professional Dog Groomer (CPDG)

Certified Professional Dog Groomer (CPDG) is a professional certification program designed to recognize and promote excellence in the dog grooming industry. The program focuses on the knowledge, skills, and abilities required of a professional dog groomer. It is administered by the National Dog Groomers Association of America (NDGAA).

To become a CPDG, individuals must complete an approved training program and pass an examination. Training programs vary in length depending on the school, but typically range from six months to one year. During this time, students learn about canine anatomy and physiology, health and safety practices, breed-specific grooming techniques, equipment use and maintenance, customer service skills, business principles, and more.

After completing their training program, applicants must take the CPDG exam which consists of multiple-choice questions covering all aspects of professional dog grooming. The exam is offered at various locations throughout the country or online via proctored testing centers.

The cost for becoming a CPDG varies depending on the training program chosen but typically ranges from $500-$2,000 USD. Additional costs may include travel expenses for attending classes or taking exams as well as purchasing materials such as textbooks or tools.

2. Certified Pet Care Technician (CPCT)

The Certified Pet Care Technician (CPCT) is a professional certification program designed to recognize the knowledge and skills of pet care professionals. The CPCT credential demonstrates a commitment to providing quality pet care services and is an important asset for those seeking career advancement in the pet care industry.

The CPCT program consists of a comprehensive online exam that covers topics such as animal behavior, nutrition, health, safety, grooming, and customer service. To become certified, applicants must successfully pass the exam with a score of 70% or higher. The exam typically takes about two hours to complete.

To get started on your path to becoming a CPCT, you will need to register for the exam through the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS). Registration costs $150 and includes access to study materials. Once you have registered for the exam, you will be able to take it at any time within six months of registration.

The cost of becoming a Certified Pet Care Technician (CPCT) is $150 for registration and access to study materials.

3. Certified Animal Care Technician (CACT)

Certified Animal Care Technician (CACT) is a professional certification program designed to recognize the skills and knowledge of individuals working in animal care. The CACT certification is offered by the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS). It is designed to provide recognition for those who have demonstrated a high level of proficiency in animal care, safety, and welfare.

The CACT program consists of two parts: an online course and an on-site assessment/evaluation. The online course covers topics such as animal behavior, nutrition, health, safety, and handling. The on-site assessment/evaluation requires applicants to demonstrate their knowledge and skills in areas such as observation and assessment of animals, providing appropriate housing and enrichment activities, administering medications, performing basic grooming tasks, cleaning cages/enclosures, maintaining records, providing customer service and more.

It typically takes about 6 months to complete the CACT program. To get started with the program applicants must first register with NAPPS and pay the registration fee which is currently $150 USD. After registering applicants will receive access to the online course materials which they can complete at their own pace within 6 months. Once all course requirements are completed applicants must then schedule an appointment with a certified assessor for their on-site evaluation/assessment which typically takes about 2 hours. Upon successful completion of both parts of the program applicants will be awarded their CACT certification which is valid for 3 years from date of issue.

4. Certified Veterinary Assistant (CVA)

A Certified Veterinary Assistant (CVA) is a professional who has been trained and certified to provide medical care for animals. The CVA program is designed to provide veterinary assistants with the knowledge and skills necessary to assist veterinarians in providing quality care for their patients.

The CVA program typically takes between six months and two years to complete, depending on the school you attend. Most courses are offered online or through traditional classroom settings. In order to become a Certified Veterinary Assistant, you must complete a set of classes that cover topics such as animal anatomy and physiology, animal nutrition, animal behavior, veterinary pharmacology, laboratory techniques, medical terminology, and more.

In order to be eligible for certification as a CVA, you must have completed an accredited program and passed the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA) exam. The cost of the exam varies depending on the school you attend but typically ranges from $150-200 USD. Additionally, some schools may require additional fees for textbooks or other materials needed for the coursework.

Once you have passed the NAVTA exam and received your certification, it is important to maintain your certification by completing continuing education credits every two years. This ensures that your knowledge base remains up-to-date with current trends in veterinary medicine.

5. Certified Kennel Technician (CKT)

A Certified Kennel Technician (CKT) is a professional who has been trained to provide care for animals in a kennel or other animal-care facility. This certification is designed to ensure that kennel technicians have the necessary knowledge and skills to provide safe, humane, and responsible care for animals.

The certification process typically takes between two and four months to complete. To become certified, applicants must first complete an approved training program. This may include online courses, on-the-job training, or a combination of both. Once the training program is completed, applicants must pass an exam administered by the National Animal Care & Control Association (NACA).

The cost of becoming certified as a CKT varies depending on the type of training program chosen. Online courses typically range from $50-$200, while on-the-job training programs can cost up to $1,000. In addition to these costs, there is also an exam fee of $100 that must be paid before taking the NACA exam.

Once certified as a CKT, professionals are expected to adhere to the standards set forth by NACA and maintain their certification through continuing education credits every two years.

6. Certified Animal Health Technician (CAHT)

Certified Animal Health Technician (CAHT) is a professional certification program designed to recognize the expertise of individuals who have achieved a high level of knowledge and skill in the field of animal health technology. The program is administered by the National Association of Veterinary Technicians in America (NAVTA).

The CAHT certification requires applicants to pass an exam that covers topics such as anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, nutrition, laboratory procedures, medical terminology, and emergency care. To qualify for the exam, applicants must have at least two years of experience working in an animal health technician role or have completed an approved veterinary technology program.

The CAHT exam typically takes three hours to complete and costs $225 USD. It is offered twice a year at various locations across the United States. After passing the exam, applicants will receive their CAHT certification and be eligible for additional continuing education courses and certifications.

7. Certified Canine Massage Therapist (CCMT)

Certified Canine Massage Therapist (CCMT) is a certification program that provides massage therapy to dogs. It is designed to help improve the physical and mental health of dogs by providing therapeutic touch, stretching, and joint mobilization. The certification program requires completion of an accredited course and successful passing of a written exam.

The CCMT course typically lasts between four to six months, depending on the school or provider. During this time, students learn about canine anatomy and physiology, canine massage techniques, and how to safely administer massage therapy to canines. Additionally, some schools may offer additional courses such as nutrition, behavior modification, and business management.

To become a Certified Canine Massage Therapist (CCMT), you must first complete an accredited course from a school or provider that is recognized by the National Certification Board for Animal Acupressure & Massage (NCBAM). After completing the coursework and passing the written exam, you will be eligible for certification.

The cost of becoming a Certified Canine Massage Therapist (CCMT) varies depending on the school or provider you choose. Generally speaking, courses range from $500-$1,000 USD for tuition alone; however, additional costs may include books/materials fees and exam fees.

8. Certified Canine Behavior Consultant (CCBC)

A Certified Canine Behavior Consultant (CCBC) is a professional who specializes in the assessment, diagnosis, and treatment of canine behavior problems. The CCBC credential is awarded by the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants (IAABC). To become certified as a CCBC, applicants must have a minimum of 500 hours of experience working with dogs and their owners, successfully complete an IAABC-approved course in canine behavior consulting, and pass an extensive written examination.

The certification process typically takes around two years to complete. The first step is to take the IAABC-approved course which covers topics such as canine ethology, learning theory, behavior modification techniques, and client communication skills. After completing the course, applicants must submit proof of their experience working with dogs and their owners to the IAABC for review. Once approved, applicants can register for the written exam which consists of multiple choice questions covering all aspects of canine behavior consulting.

The cost for becoming certified as a CCBC varies depending on the specific courses taken and other associated fees. Generally speaking, it costs between $1,000-$2,000 USD to become certified as a CCBC.

9. Certified Pet Nutritionist (CPN)

Certified Pet Nutritionist (CPN) is a professional designation that demonstrates an individual’s expertise in pet nutrition. It is awarded by the American College of Veterinary Nutrition (ACVN), a professional organization dedicated to promoting excellence in veterinary nutrition.

To become a Certified Pet Nutritionist, applicants must have completed a minimum of 30 hours of coursework in canine and feline nutrition from an accredited institution, such as a college or university. Additionally, applicants must have at least two years of experience working with animals in either a clinical or research setting. Finally, applicants must pass the ACVN certification exam which covers topics such as nutrition physiology, nutrient metabolism, diet formulation and nutritional assessment.

The process of becoming certified typically takes several months to complete. After completing the necessary coursework and gaining experience with animals, applicants must submit their application to the ACVN for review. Once approved, they can then register for and take the certification exam.

The cost to become certified varies depending on the type of program chosen and whether additional materials are purchased. Generally speaking, however, it costs approximately $500 to become certified through the ACVN program.

10. National Dog Groomers Association of America Professional Grooming Certificate Program

The National Dog Groomers Association of America Professional Grooming Certificate Program is a comprehensive program designed to recognize and promote the highest standards of professional pet grooming. It is designed to provide groomers with the knowledge and skills necessary to become successful in the industry. The program consists of four levels: Basic, Intermediate, Advanced, and Master.

The Basic level requires a minimum of 30 hours of classroom instruction and hands-on practice. This level focuses on basic grooming techniques such as bathing, brushing, nail trimming, ear cleaning, and coat conditioning. Upon completion of this level, students will receive a certificate from the NDGAA recognizing their achievement.

The Intermediate level requires an additional 20 hours of classroom instruction and hands-on practice. This level focuses on more advanced techniques such as breed specific styling and creative grooming. Upon completion of this level, students will receive a certificate from the NDGAA recognizing their achievement.

The Advanced level requires an additional 10 hours of classroom instruction and hands-on practice. This level focuses on specialty services such as color enhancement, hand scissoring, show preparation, pet first aid/CPR certification, business management principles for groomers, etc. Upon completion of this level, students will receive a certificate from the NDGAA recognizing their achievement.

The Master Level requires an additional 10 hours of classroom instruction and hands-on practice as well as passing a final exam administered by the NDGAA board members or certified instructors. This level focuses on advanced topics such as customer service excellence principles for groomers; canine anatomy; canine behavior; canine nutrition; salon safety & sanitation; marketing & sales strategies for groomers; etc. Upon completion of this level students will receive a certificate from the NDGAA recognizing their achievement as well as being listed in the organization’s online directory for potential employers or clients to find them easily.

It typically takes between 4-6 months to complete all four levels depending on how often classes are offered in your area (some areas may offer classes every other week while others may only offer classes once per month). To get started you must first locate an accredited instructor or school near you that offers classes through the NDGAA Professional Grooming Certificate Program (a list can be found on their website). Once you have located an instructor or school you can contact them directly to inquire about class schedules and tuition costs (tuition costs vary depending on location).

Do You Really Need a Kennel Technician Certificate?

The answer to this question depends on your goals and the type of work you plan to do. If you are interested in working in a kennel or animal shelter, then a Kennel Technician Certificate may be beneficial. A Kennel Technician Certificate will provide you with the knowledge and skills necessary to perform basic tasks related to caring for animals, such as cleaning cages, walking dogs, administering medications, and providing basic grooming services. Additionally, having a certificate can help demonstrate an employer that you have the skills and experience required to handle the job responsibilities.

On the other hand, if you are looking for a job in veterinary medicine or animal research, then a Kennel Technician Certificate is not likely to be helpful. In these fields, more advanced training is typically required and employers may prefer applicants who have earned a degree in Veterinary Medicine or Animal Science.

Ultimately, it is up to you to decide whether or not obtaining a Kennel Technician Certificate is worth your time and effort. Consider the type of job you are applying for and the requirements needed for that position before making your decision.

Related: Kennel Technician Resume Examples

FAQs About Kennel Technician Certifications

1. What qualifications do I need to become a Kennel Technician?

Answer: To become a Kennel Technician you will need to obtain a high school diploma or equivalent, complete an animal care course and acquire certification from an accredited institution.

2. How long does it take to become certified as a Kennel Technician?

Answer: The amount of time it takes to become certified as a Kennel Technician depends on the institution offering the certification program and individual learning speed. Generally, it can take anywhere from six months to two years to obtain certification.

3. What is the cost associated with obtaining kennel technician certification?

Answer: The cost of obtaining kennel technician certification varies depending on the institution offering the program and any additional fees for materials or supplies. Generally, you can expect to pay anywhere from $500-$2000 for certification courses and programs.

4. Are there any continuing education requirements after obtaining kennel technician certification?

Answer: Yes, most institutions require continuing education credits in order to maintain your kennel technician certification status. In general, these credits must be renewed every two years in order to remain current with industry standards and regulations.

5. Is there an age requirement for becoming a Kennel Technician?

Answer: No, there is no age requirement for becoming a Kennel Technician; however, anyone younger than 18 may require parental permission in order to enroll in certain certification programs or courses.