Job Description

Austin Pets Alive! (APA!) is one of Austin’s most dynamic and best-loved nonprofits. The organization is the leader in the no kill movement nationally and is considered a national thought leader in animal welfare. APA! locally rescues, treats, and adopts out 10,000 homeless dogs and cats each year, providing the safety net for Austin’s most at-risk shelter pets, which helps Austin to be a no-kill city, while also assisting other communities in saving homeless animals. the organization is distinguished by the scrappiness of its grassroots, non-traditional community-based animal rescue work. The organization continues to innovate best practices to save sheltered lives and teaches its renowned no kill lifesaving model to 400 students annually, who attend apprenticeships at APA!’s Maddie’s® Lifesaving Academy, and to hundreds of animal welfare professionals who attend the organization’s annual American Pets Alive! conference.

The goal of the Dog Behavior Program Trainer is to increase the total amount of dogs that are handled and worked each day, assist the team with daily playgroups, as well as progress volunteers and Dog Care employees in their skill set through training classes.

Work with the Dog Behavior Lead Trainer to:
- Create and enforce training plans for all dogs, prioritizing the dogs in our care who have a greater need for advanced training and behavior modification
- Provide pre-adoption training as needed
Work with shelter staff to ensure:
- Mental and behavioral health of the entire dog population is met
- Home criteria for each dog is accurate and updated in the necessary files
- All adoptable dogs can meet prospective adopters
- All unadoptable dogs are safely handled and managed for daily outings
- Any assistance needed in regards to behavior are appropriately met or delegated to the right department
Host volunteer classes
Assist in the assessment of Behavior-Attention dogs at Austin Animal Center
Assist with the handling, assessment, and generalization of “Behavior Staff” dogs
Assist the with other daily tasks and duties, including but not limited to:
One-on-one volunteer sessions
Mentorship assistance and coverage
Animal database maintenance

Ability to work with people in a variety of scenarios, some of which may be high stress or sensitive
Knowledge of dog body language and a more advanced understanding of dog behavior, including the four quadrants of learning and how they apply to dog training
Prior experience training dogs, or have a background working around animals
Ability to effectively communicate and collaborate well with a broad population including fosters, volunteers, and staff

Ability to routinely lift 25-50 pounds
Ability to hear normal speech at close contact and shouting up to 150 feet away with the ability to hear and discern dog vocalizations both soft and loud and The ability to respond quickly if needed
Ability to wear personal protective gear correctly most of the day

Please visit the career page of our website to read the full job description and to apply:


This is a full time job

Contact Information

Job Contact Details

Melinda Lauffer

Closing Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Posting Date:

Closing Date: