If you’re anything like me, your head turns whenever you hear the word free. Free stuff? Count me in! But it can be hard to weed through all the options out there. So we’ve done the digging for you and compiled a list of our favorite free resources for dog trainers.
We scoped out courses, training resources, and business development freebies that will help you expand your knowledge and skills (and give your business that extra boost!) without breaking the bank. We’ve also included some of our favorite podcasts, because sometimes the only learning we have time for is the multitasking type!
Both Alison and Coursera offer lots of free courses on business, management, finance, teaching, and marketing. Alison free courses include ads, but you can always upgrade to the ad-free premium membership if you’re not an ad fan. On Coursera, you have the option to get certificates from accredited universities for $49, but that’s not necessary to get the course materials.
Skillshare is another, more informal option where courses are taught by creators. They don’t have free courses but do have a free 30 day trial if you want to check out what they offer and maybe take a class or two.
Grisha Stewart’s How to Human course was created for dog trainers and animal lovers as a place to share resources she’s gathered throughout her journey. I paid for this course when it was released and it was worth every penny! Grisha has decided to make this course free as a way to give back to the community.
For most dog trainers the business end of training is where we have the most room for growth. Luckily, there are state and local business opportunities to uplevel all aspects of your business from marketing to taxes!
Small Business Development Centers provide training to small businesses throughout the US. Simply enter your zip code and you’ll find counseling and training for marketing, financial planning, etc., as well as live workshops near you, most of which are free.
They also have courses on planning, marketing, and more in their Virtual Learning Center. Speaking of virtual learning… you might already have a LinkedIn account, but did you know they offer free courses and events as well as a small business newsletter?
Another great resource for businesses is your local Chamber of Commerce. Most have free events throughout the year for networking and development as well as learning opportunities. To find events near your check out the Chamber of Commerce directory.
SCORE is a nonprofit that offers free business training on a variety of small business topics. They have virtual webinars, courses, and even business templates and e-guides. You can also attend live workshops in your area or apply for a free local mentorship.
I might be biased, but we also have great business help specifically for dog trainers over at Dog Trainer’s Umbrella. Join our live meetings or check out the blog for business tips and tricks. One of my favorites is our post about Gmail, another free resource for dog trainers that offers templates, calendar syncing, and the ability to share docs.
The Journal of Applied Animal Behaviour Science allows authors the option to publish “open access,” meaning you get to access it for free! They regularly publish articles on dogs in relation to behavioral problems or to the training of dogs for different purposes.
For more informal reading, we have quite a few favorites! The Clicker training library is full of articles that can be sorted by species and/or category. Fenzi Dog Sports Academy also has a list of free resources available to owners and trainers which includes articles and webinars.
The Fear Free Education Library has quite a few free articles and webinars, with the option to become a member and gain access to all of their learning materials. More of a visual learner? Check out the Fear Free Pets YouTube Channel.
Another great resource is Lily Chin’s free poster section, where you can download and print her posters in multiple languages. Please give her credit when using them and if you plan to print and distribute multiple copies within your organization, consider making a donation!
This isn’t an exhaustive list, but here are some of our favorites! Pro-tip: Use the search feature of your favorite platform to find all sorts of podcasts based on your favorite topics OR someone you’re interested in learning from… create a custom playlist and listen away!
- Fenzi Dog Sports Podcast hosted by Melissa Breau
- The Bitey End of the Dog hosted by Michael Shikashio
- Drinking From the Toilet hosted by Hannah Branigan
- Fostering Excellence in Agility hosted by Megan Foster
- K9 Detection Collaborative hosted by Stacy Barnett, Robin Greubel, and Crystal Wing
- Animal Training Academy hosted by Ryan Cartlidge
- CogDog Radio hosted by Sarah Stremming
- Worklife with Adam Grant
- Entrepreneurs on Fire hosted by John Lee Dumas
- Marketing Made Simple hosted by Dr. J.J. Peterson and April Sunshine Hawkins
- The Productivity Show hosted by Asian Efficiency
If we’ve missed any FREE resources you love, please let us know in the comments below. You can never have too much free stuff!