The most effective way to become a Dolphin Trainer

What does a dolphin trainer do?

They create and modify dolphin behaviour in stages by teaching them to associate signals with the desired behaviour. With experience, trainers can assist vets when basic procedures need to be performed to promote and maintain the dolphin’s health.

What courses are available?

Until now, the only way you could gain any practical knowledge, was to attend a short course which lasted between three to ten days, at a dolphin facility. The average cost of these courses is around $1,500 plus your travel costs. These courses are, in my view, too short to gain any meaningful understanding of training techniques and only basic signals are taught. They do provide an opportunity to handle a dolphin, but you can experience this at a fraction of the price in a trainer for a day experience. These courses will not teach you all you need to know and certainly they will not enable you to train behaviours from scratch and being able to understand Operant Conditioning properly.

What does the Via Dolphin course offer?

Firstly, let me just get one thing clear, if you are looking for a course that will result in a certification or qualification that would enable you to work with dolphins, I am afraid they do not exist. Our course does provide a certificate but it is not accredited in any way, since there is no such accreditation for dolphin training.

One of the reasons why I created the course was following my years of training people to become dolphin trainers, I realised that there was no course available that would teach you all the most relevant information, to enable someone to gain knowledge as a dolphin trainer. Most employers either want trainers with some experience or they accept that beginners will not have any knowledge and they train them themselves, however they will not pass on all the required knowledge because they want to keep ahead and fear someone gaining more knowledge than them, would be a threat to them.

I realise you may be concerned, that you will not be able to simply show an employer a certificate and get a job, but the knowledge you will learn with this course, will enable you to progress faster and further once you are in a job and impress potential employers that you have completed a course that then familiarises you with vital knowledge, such as training techniques and tips which you can use from day one. Even if you have a degree in marine biology, this will not give you any real advantage as a dolphin trainer, so my course is the only method of gaining vital knowledge, tips and advice about training dolphins.

My course gives you countless tips and advice from all my years of training trainers and dolphins alike, plus what no-one wants to teach you, Operant Conditioning, which is the most successful technique in training of any sort. With step by step guides and real-life problem-solving training techniques, the course will give you what no other course or guide can offer you.

What if I am still unsure?

In my view, you should ask these questions;

  • How extensive is the course content, what will I know at the end of it?
  • What level of experience does the course provider have?
  • Will I forget what I have learnt or will I have the information to refer to always?
  • Does the course teach me from scratch to train multiple behaviours?
  • Is it value for money?

There are many companies out there offering the alternative courses to mine, but in my view, most have the same problems in common. They only last a few days and no-one can learn to become a trainer so quickly. Despite the high cost, they cannot teach you step by step, how to train multiple behaviours in a week or so. You need months of practice and during such time, being able to refer to the training course material, including helpful tips, will be essential. In my experience, all the Dolphin Trainers I have known do not want to teach you all they know, simply because they fear the completion and want to retain their position. I have no such fear, my only wish is that whilst I earn a little money from passing on my knowledge, Dolphin Trainers will be successful and dolphins will be treated better. To me everyone wins, I pass on my knowledge, you reach your full potential and fulfil your dreams of becoming a good Dolphin Trainer and the dolphin benefit from being trained positively, with love, care and attention.

What are the different stages of a Dolphin Trainers’ career?

To begin your career, you will usually start as an Assistant Trainer, assisting the Senior Trainers in all their activities. You will learn to give the most basic signals and also learn how to present different types of behaviours. You will also learn how to prepare the dolphins diet and undertake some basic tasks, within the dolphin area.

Mid-level trainers or Senior Trainers, supervise the Assistant Trainers and whilst they present and perform the programs, they may not have advanced knowledge or be able to cope with complex behavioural problems.

Supervisor Trainers are advanced trainers with extensive knowledge of training techniques and they are capable of training other trainers. They will usually have to oversee the various programs in the dolphin area and will have advanced knowledge of how to avoid and fix complex behavioural problems.

How can I reach my full potential?

There are not many trainers out there who know how to train a dolphin from scratch. Most of them know how to present a show and how to do an interactive program, by just learning the signals. To learn to train a dolphin from scratch takes many years of experience, but those who know, don’t give their secrets away.

You must plan the path ahead and set out your desired end goal; then you must know the steps or keys achievements, necessary along that path.

If your gaol is to become a great Dolphin Trainer then here is my suggestion to achieving that goal;

How can Via Dolphin help me reach the top?

I have explained why my course is different and the only course that offers step by step instructions, teaching you how to train a dolphin form scratch and many other behaviours. It also explains in detail what no other course does, Operant Conditioning. You will learn all the knowledge a trainer needs for behaviour training and its techniques. You will also learn the basics of husbandry behaviours, basic behaviour troubleshooting, how to handle a dolphin in any kind of environment and situation, manoeuvres, transportation and all aspects of animal care. Lastly it provides so many tips and secrets that no other trainer will tell you, in a format that you can keep forever, that it is without question, excellent value for money.

Is there a support community I can be part of whilst I learn?

I wanted to offer something different, something nobody else offers, a complete trainer’s knowledge guide, a community and an environment where you can develop as great trainer. I have created forums with my Facebook pages and groups, which will provide support where you will be able to learn more about dolphins. You will be able to interact with over 2,000 trainers worldwide, where you can ask any question you may have.

Via Dolphin group This is our dolphin community, which offers an interactive trainers forum of animal lovers’ trainers news and fun!

Mentoring for trainer’s page Here you can access scientific research and training videos, which will help you, improving your training techniques.

Learn how to train your dolphin group (Educational group) This is a private group where you can find information about dolphins and sea lions training, educational material and infomercials as well as videos.

If you really are interested and want to go further, to pursue your dream job all the way and you want to develop as a trainer, we will give you an amazing start…

So, if you are wondering how to start, here I offer to you a map that will help you design your path.

Follow this link to save the two steps;

Trainer’s Requirements Chart:  This is my example of all the necessary things you need to reach your dream job……. a great Dolphin Trainer

Your Path to Success: Once you know all the things that you need, you can plan out where you want to start and what you will do to achieve all the steps towards your dream job.


  1. Good post. I learn something new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon everyday. It’s always exciting to read content from other authors and practice a little something from their websites.


    1. viadolphin says:

      Thank you very much for your lovely feedback, it means a lot to me.
      If you are a trainer and want to learn other techniques of training an animal, you can find valuable information on my new training book.

      You can find it on the link bellow

      Behaviour Training Tutorial Handbook


  2. Lacy Schweda says:

    It’s hard to come by knowledgeable people for this subject, however, you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks


    1. viadolphin says:

      Thanks a lot for your comment, it means a lot to me. I do not know if you are a trainer, but if you are and you would like more information about training, you can check our new training book on the link bellow.

      Behaviour Training Tutorial Handbook


    2. viadolphin says:

      Thank you very much for your lovely comment. Yes, I have many years of experience on the field. I love what I do, that is the reason why I have decided to share it. Most people love dolphins and would like to learn about them.


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