What Does a Dog Handler Do?

Dog handlers are indispensable in overseeing dogs and ensuring their health and safety. This profession encompasses various responsibilities that go beyond the simple act of walking dogs. Explore the duties, job description, and prerequisites for a dog handler in the United Kingdom.

Dog Handler Job Overview

Dog handlers are entrusted with the responsibility of caring for and controlling dogs. This role demands physical fitness, animal knowledge, and responsibility. Successful performance in this role is gauged by the well-being and contentment of the dogs under their care and the owners’ satisfaction.

Primary Duties and Responsibilities of a Dog Handler

Dog Handling and Control:

  • Safely manage and control dogs in diverse settings.
  • Utilize appropriate restraints and handling techniques.

Training and Behaviour Observation:

  • Observe and assess the behaviour of dogs.
  • Implement training techniques to address behavioural issues.

Healthcare and Veterinary Support:

  • Administer medications as prescribed.
  • Coordinate and accompany dogs for veterinary appointments.

Exercise and Play:

  • Plan and conduct exercise routines for dogs.
  • Provide mental stimulation through play and interactive activities.

Reporting and Communication:

  • Maintain communication with dog owners regarding their pets’ well-being.
  • Report any health or behaviour concerns promptly.

Emergency Response:

  • Take appropriate action in emergencies, ensuring the safety of dogs.
  • Follow established protocols for handling unexpected situations.

Dog Handler Job Requirements

To excel in the role of a dog handler, individuals must possess a set of skills and qualifications:


  • A background in animal care or related fields is advantageous.

Physical Fitness:

  • Good physical health and stamina to handle dogs of various sizes and energy levels.


  • Previous experience in handling dogs is preferred.

Reliability and Trustworthiness:

  • Demonstrated responsibility and trustworthiness in handling the care of animals.

Patience and Punctuality:

  • Patience is vital when dealing with animals, and punctuality is essential for adhering to schedules.


  • A compassionate approach to caring for dogs, considering their emotional and physical needs.


A dog handler is not merely someone who walks dogs; they also care for them, train them, and serve as companions. To ensure the health and happiness of our canine and feline companions, this multifaceted position requires a combination of skills, knowledge, and a genuine love for both.

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