Canine Communications Diploma







This programme is designed to equip the student with the knowledge to ‘read’ and understand how and what dogs communicate to each other and to humans. This is essential if one is to be working with dogs or engaged in training or behaviour therapy.

Course Module

  1. What Makes a Social Animal?
  • Dogs as social animals
  • Aggregations
  • Evolution of canine social behaviour
  • What constitutes behaviour?
  • Kin selection
  • Territories and territorial behaviour
  • What is communication?
  • Advantages of different sensory channels of communication
  • Defining communication
  • What is language?
  • Verbal communication and how dogs learn words by association
  • The canine senses
  • Dog dialects
  1. Acoustic Communication
  • Sending and receiving acoustic communication
  • Hearing
  • Basic sounds of the canine
  • Various types of barking
  • Various types of growling
  • Snarling
  • Various types of howling
  • What is baying?
  • Whines and Whimpers
  • Yelping
  • What is it when a dog screams?
  • Panting and sighing
  • Sighs
  • Misunderstanding what a dog is trying to tell you
  • Canines misunderstanding humans
  1. Body Language
  • What is meant by body language?
  • Personal space
  • Various types of body language
  • Faces and their expressions
  • What the mouth can convey
  • Staring
  • Yawning
  • Body postures
  • The confident dog
  • The shy dog
  • Distraction signals
  • The stress signal
  • Play
  • The play bow and play dance
  • The older dog and play
  • Tail language
  • Positions of the tail
  • Wagging
  1. Visual Communication
  • Canine eyesight
  • The dog’s eye
  • Eye shape
  • Staring
  • Blinking
  • Ears
  • ‘Floppy’ ears and the domestic dog
  • Dribbling
  • Neck and throat postures
  • Hackles
  • More tail language
  • Bristling and tail cricks
  • Leg movement
  • Paw lifts
  • Meet and greet rituals
  • Defecation
  1. Smell and Taste
  • The canine nose
  • The Jacobson’s organ
  • Taste and its link to smell
  • Pheromones
  • Saliva
  • Messages in urine
  • Females and pheromones
  • Males and pheromones
  • The dog’s territory
  • Faeces
  • Anal glands
  • Perinial gland
  • Dorsal or violet gland
  • Rolling in smelly items
  1. Why Touch is Important to Canines
  • Touch or tactile communication
  • Meet, greet and licking as a form of communication
  • Lip smacking
  • Teat nudge
  • Kneading
  • Muzzle-nudge and nose to throat nudge
  • Muzzle grasp
  • Hip nudge
  • Thrusting

Course Details:

  • Study Level 2
  • The study Level relates to the how demanding the course is. 1 is beginner and 5 is HND / Foundation Degree level.
  • 6 Module Course
  • This course is delivered in 6 study modules which need to be passed to gain the qualification.


  • Course fee – R5900.00 (includes registration and certification)
  • Installment option – R1500 registration, R200 certification and R900 per module


Monthly installments – Choose your own amount to pay monthly, no less than R500, over and above reg and cert payment. (This option ensures that finances don’t get in the way of completing your course, giving you peace of mind.)(Each module must be paid up before release.)