What qualifications do I need to work in a dog kennel?

As a kennel assistant it will be your duty to offer day to day care for any dogs that are present in the kennel. It will be your duty to help schedule boarding appointments for the animals, clean runs and cages, vroom, bath, exercise, feed, give medication and also monitor the behaviour of any animals present. It is also your duty to communicate with clients when they drop off and pick up their dogs. 

When you work in a kennel you typically work under a supervisor, typically the manager of the kennel, a breeder, a veterinarian, or any facility supervisor. If you happen to work in an enamel t a part of a veterinary practice, it might be necessary for you assist in restraining and handling dogs for any veterinary procedures that might be performed on them. There are also certain kennels that provide training services to dog owners.

Knowledge and skills

To be able to work in a dog kennel, you will need:

  • To use your initiative
  • To pay close attention to detail and be extremely thorough
  • To be flexible
  • To be open to change
  • To be able to keep your cool in stressful scenarios
  • To be patient
  • To be able to work with others
  • To be able to accept criticism, while also working effectively under pressure
  • Great communication skills both verbal and non-verbal
  • Great customer service skills

The path to required if you want to work in a kennel

To work in a kennel as a kennel assistant, you don’t have to be formally trained or have a degree. It is actually a commonplace to have this position filled by a high school or an undergraduate looking to study in a veterinary related field. Numerous aspiring veterinarians, veterinary assistants, groomers and breeder typically begin as kennel attendants. What you would need if you want to work in a kennel is any of the following:

  • An apprenticeship
  • A university course
  • Direct application
  • Volunteering

When it comes to the type of college courses you can take, it is possible to take the following to help you in your bid to work in a dog kennel:

  • A certificate in Animal Care introduction Level 1
  • Animal management diploma Level 2

To be able to study either of these courses, you will typically require the following education grades

A minimum of 2 GCSE grades from D or 3 to G or 1. This is required for a level one course

For a level two course, you will be required to have a minimum of 2 GCSEs at a grade A* or 9 to a grade D or 3.


Another avenue that is useful for you to begin working in a dog kennel is to apply for an apprenticeship. The roles available to you would either be an advanced apprenticeship or an intermediate one in either animal carer or animal welfare.

There are typically no entry requirements for these sorts of apprenticeship, however, it might be helping your case if you had some GCSEs.