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From Furry Friends to Dream Job: How to Get a Job in a Doggy Daycare Centre

The popularity of Dog Daycare Centres, often fondly referred to as Doggy Daycare, over recent years has created some excellent opportunities for those seeking a career working with animals.

Pet owners who lead busy lives and many who are transitioning from work-from-home roles back into the workplace are entrusting centres to provide a safe and stress free environment in which their pets can be socialised, entertained and supervised.

Doggy Daycare Centres are also becoming more diverse due to their increased popularity, size and the needs of dog owners. They’re now offering additional services such as dog training, grooming, transport services and even hydrotherapy.

If working in a Doggy Daycare Centre sounds like the right career for you, learn more about the different roles available, what’s involved, and how to start your career in the industry including qualifications to kick start your future.


What do you call someone who works at a Doggy Daycare Centre?

There are several roles and jobs available in Doggy Daycare Centres. Examples of job titles and their tasks follow. 


1. Doggy Daycare Attendant or Animal Attendant 

A Doggy Daycare Attendant or Animal Attendant is by far the most popular job at a Doggy Daycare Centre. In this role you work directly with clients’ dogs and participate in tasks such as:-

  • providing safe off-lead exercise opportunities and enrichment activities
  • supervising group play activities
  • assessing behaviours and interactions to reduce the risk of harm
  • maintaining a clean, stress-free environment (yes, lots of cleaning!)
  • providing dogs with water and food
  • bathing and drying dogs
  • maintaining records of treatment, feeding and care
  • interacting with pet owners and providing feedback
  • creating media content (photos and videos) to share with pet owners
  • assisting with toileting and basic hygiene.

In some cases, Doggy Daycare Attendants may also assist in training activities. Learn more about: How to start out as a Doggy Daycare Attendant. 


Getting a job in a dog daycare in Australia

2. Dog Trainer

Dog trainers work with dogs to teach them obedience and, in some instances, advanced performance activities. As a dog trainer your responsibilities will include:

  • reinforce positive behaviour in dogs
  • identify and provide solutions to specific dog behavioural problems
  • mentor and inspire owners to learn training techniques 
  • teach dogs how to perform new skills. 

In Australia, there are no compulsory formal educational requirements to become a dog trainer. However, in late 2021 the national training body released the first ever nationally recognised qualification, now released as ACM40322 Certificate IV in Animal Behaviour and Training. 

3. Groomer

Some Doggy Daycare Centres in Australia also offer grooming services. Where this is the case, dog groomers work to improve a dog’s appearance and hygiene by washing, trimming, brushing and styling dogs. As a groomer, you will have an eye for detail, be patient and gentle, and have the skills to make dogs feel calm and safe when working with them.

4. Receptionist and Customer Service Officer

A customer service officer and receptionist are the face of a Doggy Daycare Centre. You will have excellent communication skills to attract and retain clients to the centre. Roles and responsibilities differ with the institution, but the basics include:

  • answering phone calls
  • receiving and responding to emails
  • recognising clients and recalling their dogs by name
  • scheduling appointments and bookings
  • maintaining a sanitary environment in the reception and retail areas. 
You may also be asked to:

Want to know why now is the best time to start?

With factors like the growing popularity of pet ownership in Australia, there are several reasons why now is a fantastic time to start working in the animal care industry.

  • help the daycare animal attendants when needed
  • assist with promoting the centre, such as posting videos and pictures on social media platforms or private sharing spaces.

To become a Receptionist or Customer Service Officer, previous experience is not necessary. However, you must be able to multitask and thrive under pressure during busy times of the day (e.g., at drop off and pick up times), as well as be passionate about dogs and have a true joy for pet ownership.

5. Dog Transport Driver

A driver at a Doggy Daycare Centre transports pets between their homes and the centre. To work as a driver, you need to be experienced and confident in handling various types of dogs. In addition, you must be skilled at handling any emerging situation on the road to prevent anxiety among the dogs. 

6. Centre Managers

A Doggy Daycare Centre Manager works closely with the business owners to provide a smooth and profitable operation. As a Centre Manager you will manage staff, rosters, finances (sales and costs), and sometimes accounts while ensuring a thriving environment is maintained for visitors. 

7. Social Media and Marketing Officer

A thriving Doggy Daycare Centre requires a steady flow of canine clientele. As a social media and marketing officer your role will primarily involve generating interest in the centre’s services.  Responsibilities include activities such as:

  • coordinating marketing campaigns with sales activities
  • organising and attending events and expos to promote services
  • encouraging partnerships with other pet related businesses such as vet hospitals, pet shops, dog trainers and dog behaviourists
  • capturing high-quality photos to share with clients and use in promotions such as social media platforms
  • reporting and monitoring customer satisfaction. 
Doggy daycare careers

You want to start out: How to get a job as a Doggy Daycare Attendant

A Doggy Daycare Animal Attendant, also known as an animal carer, animal assistant, or kernel hand, takes care of the animal’s daily needs. If you are thinking of venturing into the animal care industry, below are some tips that will enhance your prospect of becoming an Animal Attendant in Australia:

  • If you have no prior experience, consider work experience at a local centre.
  • Play an active role in the lives of your family pets.
  • Find out if you have the qualities of an Animal Attendant. 
  • Consider a qualification in animal care to give you the necessary skills and knowledge.

What are the Ideal Qualities of a Doggy Daycare Attendant?

  • Natural love for animals

    and a desire to provide a safe and caring environment for them

  • Team player

    as you will work closely with other animal attendants and supervisors in small teams

  • An active and hard worker

    as you will be on your feet most of the day, and the job can become quite physically demanding

  • Excellent communication skills

    and interpersonal skills to communicate with clients

  • Willingness to learn

    as every animal has different challenges, and you will always be learning new techniques to overcome sometimes tricky behavioural situations

  • Animal handling experience

    as well as the skills and knowledge to work safely with animals

  • First aid certificate

    in human first aid, as accidents do occasionally happen!

Do You Need Experience to get a Job at a Doggy Daycare Centre?

One of the most sought-after requirements for a Doggy Daycare Attendant is experience. If you are new to the field, volunteering is one of the best ways to get hands-on experience with dogs. In addition, being a volunteer allows you to find out if you can work with animals and gives you insight into the administrative tasks behind the scenes. 

Qualifications Needed to Work at a Doggy Daycare Centre in Australia

There are no specific or mandatory qualifications needed to work in the Doggy Daycare industry in Australia. However, having knowledge in animal care will give you an upper hand so you can confidently and safely handle dogs. As positions in Doggy Daycare Centres become more desirable, Daycare Centres are now commonly seeking as a minimum:-

  • Experience working with dogs in a commercial setting.
  • Customer service skills.
  • Drivers’ Licence.
  • Qualifications in either animal care, animal behaviour or veterinary nursing.

As a training provider, AVT is often asked by Doggy Daycare Centres to advertise roles to our students and graduates.

You can gain knowledge and skills in animal care by taking nationally accredited entry-level courses such as those recommended below. These courses combine practical and theoretical training to equip you with the necessary knowledge to start a long-lasting career in animal care.

Jump-start Your Career Today as a Doggy Daycare Attendant

AVT is a leader in vet nursing training, animal care courses, and animal behaviour and training qualifications. Whether starting out or seeking to expand your knowledge, AVTs qualifications are well known and trusted by employers.

Contact us today to find out your pathway options.

Working in a dog daycare

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ACM20121 Certificate II in Animal Care (Online)

This Online Course allows students up to 1 year to complete their qualification. It is an ideal starting point for those with very little or no prior knowledge or experience in the animal care industry.

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ACM30122 Certificate III in Animal Care Services

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ACM40322 Certificate IV in Animal Behaviour and Training

Help others gain a better understanding and relationship with their dog by developing a knowledge of different dog characteristics and gaining an understanding of the science of training.

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Animal Behaviour and Training

This is a 1 year course with online learning and practical training. You will gain a nationally recognised qualification and membership to the internationally renowned Institute of Modern Dog Trainers (IMDT)
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