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Training and Behavior Specialist - Kanab, UT

Quick Facts
Company Name:Best Friends Animal Society
Location:Kanab, UT
Employment Type:Full Time
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Location: Kanab, Utah

Summary: The Training and Behavior Specialists conduct the hands-on implementation of Best Friends Animal Society's behavior and training programs in support of Best Friends' no kill mission. The team acts with urgency and efficiency to directly train, rehabilitate, and modify behaviorally challenged animals, and participate in developing Best Friends as a leader in behavioral solutions to save the lives of animals currently at risk of being killed in shelters.

Purpose: Under the direction of the Best Friends' Advanced Behavior Program leadership, these specialists will co-create and lead innovative outcome-focused behavior programming at the sanctuary. They will assist with studies for publication and share replicable program models with a goal to solve behavioral challenges so that challenging animals can be adopted, furthering Best Friends Animal Society's strategic goals.

Essential Duties/Responsibilities:


  • Work hands-on with dogs and other animals as assigned to participate in identifying behaviors, strategizing solutions; develop training and behavior modification plans for individual dogs and behavior profiles, with a goal of assisting animals to be successfully adopted.
  • Develop standardized training, behavior modification, and management protocols and training collateral for Dogtown, adopters, volunteers, fosters, Lifesaving Centers, Network Partners and other Best Friends departments as needed; Assist Care Specialists and Team Leads when specific behavior challenges arise that prevent animals from finding a home.
  • Collaborate with the adoption and marketing teams, sanctuary and other Lifesaving Center leadership, to share behavior program success and highlight special achievements in promotion of these animals for adoption.

Training and Behavior Program

  • Functionally assess animals, coordinate ongoing evaluation and progress monitoring, participate in interactions such as play dates, parallel walks, introductions and group housing pairings; Conduct daily training and behavior modification activities for program dogs, Dogtown or other animals as assigned.
  • Participate in the study environment including collaborative studies with third parties, conducting daily activities including animal care, performing daily tracking and documentation per behavior program protocol and within the context of the animal care area's workflow and health, safety, and care standards.
  • Collaborate with Best Friends' Lifesaving Centers, network partner shelters, and others to replicate successful programs and techniques to demonstrate the ability for rehabilitation outside of the Sanctuary environment.
  • Build behavior, training and animal management capabilities of the animal care teams and volunteers through one-on-one coaching and group class work; assisting with specific challenging animals or situations as identified by animal care leadership.


  • Work collaboratively, and with a positive attitude, with all Best Friends' department teams for the care, benefit, promotion and ultimate outcome for animals in our care.
  • Conduct public presentations, participate in the development and hosting of behavior workshops, attend to relevant email correspondence and shelter or rescue group consultations as assigned, with an ability to professionally represent Best Friends' position on issues.
  • Follow Best Friends policies, procedures, and task lists for daily lifesaving outcome assignments; including accurate and timely communications, work completion, data entry, and recordkeeping.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Required Skills & Experience:

  • Dog training and behavior knowledge and experience to include theory, training techniques, and an interest to pursue continued learning in the field; professional dog training experience preferred.
  • Demonstrated ability to participate in multiple projects in various stages of development, each with a unique timeline.
  • Customer-centric, non-judgmental approach to engaging with adopters, partners, visitors, volunteers, and colleagues; familiarity and comfort with an open adoption process.
  • Resourceful, get-it-done attitude; initiative to assist in any area or process; problem solving, seeking answers independently and enthusiastically; flexibility to persist until lifesaving outcome goals are achieved.
  • Strong interpersonal skills, a team player, personable, professional, and able to get along with people from different backgrounds, as well as the ability to handle sensitive and confidential situations.
  • Abilityto work in a fast-paced environment withwell-developedorganization skillsto juggle multiple competing tasks and demands
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office products; familiarity with shelter software (Best Friends usesShelterluv), or desire to learn.

Physical & Other Requirements:

  • Must be able to:
    • Routinely lift 65 pounds and perform daily strenuous activity including, but not limited to lifting, carrying, reaching, stooping, squatting, cleaning, and bending.
    • Work at a computer or driving a car for extended periods of time with repetitive typing, sitting, arm, and hand motion.
    • Work indoors and outdoors in a variety of weather conditionsincluding extreme heat and cold.
  • Daily exposure to dogs, cats and other animals of all sizes, temperaments, and medical status.
  • Ability to travel, including overnight stays,when needed.
  • Daily hours and days of the week may vary according to the needs of the department schedule; position includes weekends, nights and holiday work.

Thank you for your interest in pursuing a career at Best Friends Animal Society. Best Friends Animal Society is an equal opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to their race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, marital status, domestic partner status, or medical condition.

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