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Director of Canine Operations

Job Description
Canine Partners of the Rockies
Organization Type: 
Job Location: 
Denver Metro
Type of Job: 
Job Category: 
Job Description: 

Does your perfect day involve belly rubs, wagging tails, and dog hair on your clothes?  Do you possess the ability to train dogs and humans to perform at an exceptional level?

Canine Partners of the Rockies (CaPR) is looking for its next Director of Canine Operations to lead our dog training initiatives during this exciting time of growth. CaPR is an Assistance Dogs International accredited service dog training and partnership non-profit located in Aurora Colorado. Founded in 2002, CaPR enables Coloradans with mobility disabilities to lead more independent and gratifying lives by providing extensive training to purpose bred pups, a personalized match process and lifetime support for each service dog team. Canine Partners of the Rockies is on the cusp of significant growth.  Our dogs in the training program and looking forward to their next big challenge.

The Director of Canine operations serves as the expert in training and developing programs for the organization.  Reporting to the Executive Director, the DCO is responsible for providing direction and leadership toward the achievement of CaPR’s vision, mission, strategic plan and annual goals and objectives as they relate to dog training. This position is also responsible for overall day to day management of dog training, volunteer committees related to dog training, outreach activities, and new program development.  This role operates in a professional office environment while working in close proximity with puppies and dogs to help socialize dogs in training.

Areas of Responsibility

The essential functions listed below are intended only as illustrations of the various types of work that may be performed; the omission of specific statements of duties does not exclude them from the position if the work is similar, related or a logical assignment to be completed by the position:


  • Responsible for canine staff leadership in the development and implementation of strategic plan and annual goals and objectives.
  • Assure plans align with the organization’s mission and driving progress towards attainment of this mission
  • Maintain all official records and documents and ensure compliance with all federal, state and local regulations
  • Maintain a fun, positive organizational culture of competency, professionalism and compassion
  • Maintain an open-door policy, allowing all Canine Operations staff and volunteers confidential access to discuss ideas and concerns

Fiscal Management

  • Responsible for the financial management of canine operations, including the development and implementation of the annual budget
  • Oversee financial practices and functions related to canine operations including those necessary for auditing, budgeting, financial analysis and reporting

Strategic Planning

  • Work with the Executive Director in setting strategic goals for the organization
  • Provide leadership in the development, implementation and accomplishment of the annual plan as approved by the Board

Fund Development

  • Provide solid business case for all canine training initiatives
  • Maintain awareness of funding results and the impact to canine operations

Human Resources

  • Oversee all aspects of human resource management for canine training staff, including but not limited to, hiring and termination, developing position descriptions, setting compensation, and applying Board-approved employee policies and benefits
  • Encourage staff development and education in recognizing how their individual roles contribute to the mission of the organization
  • Maintain a workplace atmosphere which attracts, retains and motivates a diverse staff of top-quality candidates


  • Promote active and broad participation by volunteers in appropriate areas related to the training of canines

Program Expertise

  • Ensure for the care and well-being of all CaPR puppies/dogs
  • Ensure Assistance Dogs International (ADI) standards, and Colorado PACFA regulations are adhered to, and all program and administrative staff have knowledge and understanding of standards and regulations
  • Ensure robust puppy raising and adult dog training programs designed to improve dog graduation success rates
  • Ensure successful client/dog partnerships by training dogs to an exceptional level of performance
  • Complete exceptional level performance for every dog by the age of 24 months
  • Manage the whelping process of designated breeder dogs
  • Lead ADI accreditation process
  • Maintain a solid working knowledge of significant developments and trends in the assistance dog and animal assisted intervention fields
  • Responsible for maintaining sound working relationships with community partners and encouraging collaboration
  • CaPR seeks a skilled leader that can formulate and articulate a training vision for the organization and lead/motivate/mentor a team of dedicated staff and volunteers in order to achieve CaPR’s strategic goals
  • The successful candidate will be a proven, results-oriented, experienced, and highly mission-driven leader
  • Demonstrated acumen in training dogs using positive reinforcement and clicker training. Examples will be required
  • An undergraduate degree in Business, Nonprofit Management, or closely related field as well as ADI recognized dog training certification
  • Significant (ideally 15+ years) of progressive experience in dog training sector with at least ten (10) years of demonstrated success in staff leadership, and departmental / financial management
  • Prior experience working with clients with disabilities and a working knowledge of public policy and health issues faced by individuals with disabilities
  • 10+ Years prior experience in service dog training operation
  • Demonstrated skills in office technology applications to include the Microsoft Office Suite
  • Demonstrated experience in financial reporting, budget management, and organizational processes
  • Demonstrated successful staff management and development experience
  • A passionate personal alignment with the vison and mission of CaPR
  • A “people person” who is compassionate, operates with humility and effectively integrates into the CaPR culture and environment, rapidly gaining the trust and respect of colleagues and team members throughout, even as he/she simultaneously drives change
  • A proactive leader; intellectually curious; regularly investigates and brings new ideas to the organization, especially with regard to operational best practices and staff leadership; skilled in critical and creative thinking to identify the strengths a
  • An energetic, hands-on, strategic, confident yet down-to-earth leader who embodies CaPR’s core values • An inspirational leader with the proven ability to support the leadership team and diverse groups of staff and volunteers to reach agency goals
  • Able to collect and research data and analyze diverse information to make recommendations to improve programs
  • Results-oriented and driven to move things forward; strive toward continuous improvement and measurement against goals
  • A relationship builder who is able to develop strong relationships with donors, external partners and stakeholders
  • Oral and written communication abilities – strong presentation skills; persuasive and articulate; diplomatic and open style; a good listener; credible
  • Impeccable ethics and highest integrity

$65K to $75K (dependent on experience)


Health Insurance, Dental Insurance, PTO, AD&D Insurance, 401K with employer match

How To Apply

Please send your resume and cover letter to

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