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Tier 2:

For Disabled Handlers Training Their Own Service Dogs, and For Novice Pet Dog Trainers

Moon, a red merle Australian Shepherd, is touching a red target stick with his nose.
Piper, a black and white mixed breed dog is wearing a service dog harness and is sitting on a red and white stool.
Luna, a gluten detection service dog, is sitting with a raised paw, indicating the presence of gluten in a package of granola that is marked gluten-free.
Luka, a German Shepherd Service Dog, is standing in front of a laundry basket and an opened clothes dryer. He is placing a green towel into the laundry basket, his handler is using a retractable target stick to direct Luka where to place the towel.

Tier 2 of the Barbara Handelman Service Dog Trainer Course (BHSDT), is designed for disabled handlers training their own service dogs, and for pet dog trainers interested in becoming professional service dog trainers. There are no prerequisites for taking this course.


*NOTE: The Tier 2 course does not qualify students to professionally train service dogs for clients with disabilities. Neither does this course qualify students to advise or assist disabled clients who are training their own service dogs.

The Tier 2 course is a knowledge-based curriculum covering the basics of service dog candidate selection; socialization and public access training; service dog laws; the ethics of being a service dog handler; and developing the foundation skills dogs must learn for task training. This is a self-paced course for which students have 9-months to complete all the requirements.

Students must also purchase and complete the auditor’s version of the Understanding Canine Behavior course, in order to fulfill requirements for the Certificate of Completion for the Tier 2 BHSDT course ($180.00 USD – Instructions to access this special price are provided after registration).


COST: $1,250 USD. 

9-Month Payment Plan is available for Tier 2 ($1,278 USD / $142 USD per month).

Click HERE to contact Cheryl Aguiar for instructions on purchasing the 9-month payment plan for Tier 2.


IAABC – 25
CCPDT – 21
NADOI – Approved


  • Sixteen webinar-style lectures

  • Readings, handouts and other materials specifically relevant to each lecture

  • Access to an extensive Collection of Resources including research studies; blog entries; links to lectures and videos available online; as well as published and unpublished papers by renowned individuals in the service animal industry.

  • Students who finish Tier 2 will receive a Certificate of Completion designating that they have accomplished all the requirements of the course.

Click HERE for the Tier 2 Description, Expectations, and Lesson Outline.

Tier 2 Tuition and CEUs
Tier 2
BHSDT Website Banner - Left to Right - Black and white Papillon Service Dog assists woman in wheelchair to remove a yellow jacket; large white service dog pushes a handicap accessible door button with woman standing behind; black and white Papillon service dog retrieves a banana; German Shepherd service dog retrieves a debit card from an ATM.
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