Dog Consultant –

Dog Consultant

We are currently updating the content for the education. For questions, please contact

Academic year 2024-25

Renewed content!

Application period
Application for the Autumn Semester 2024 is now open!

Do you want to invest in yourself and your dog?
Are you dreaming of becoming a dog trainer?

Dog Consultant is an education for those who want to deepen their understanding of the dog’s natural behavior and work with positive learning methods. Do you want to learn to understand the dog deeply, and improve your cooperation, or do you dream of working in the dog industry, or do you want to become a dog trainer and gain a good understanding of the dog from a behavioral and learning perspective?

Christina “Chrusse” von Pfaler

Starting from the academic year 2024-25, the Dog Consultant program will be divided into two parts, so you can choose to attend only one part, but we recommend both, of course! Part 1 starts in the autumn, August 19, 2024, and lasts until December 20, 2024.
Part 2 starts in the spring, January 7, 2025, and lasts until May 23, 2025.
You can now apply for Part 1, but also reserve a spot for the spring semester!

Part 1: Studies in Cynology

Part 1 is a foundational course in cynology, where the student learns the basics of canine ethology and learning, as well as what affects the well-being of dogs. They learn to understand how different training methods impact how dogs learn and how it affects the handler’s relationship with the dog, and vice versa.

It is also possible to participate in the education even if you are not a dog owner, as we have a good collaboration with the Guide Dog School in Vantaa. There is an opportunity to train with a dog from them during the study period.


  • Canine Ethology
  • Dog Language
  • Basics of Canine Wellness:
    • Nutrition, Alternative Healthcare Methods, First Aid for Dogs
  • Ethics and Animal Welfare
  • Learning Psychology and Practical Exercises
  • Raising a Puppy & Dog Training
  • Dog Hobbies
  • Human and Dog Interaction
  • Basics of Breed Recognition
  • Dog Citizen Test Exercises
  • 1-week Work Placement at a Dog-Related Facility
  • Project Work

For whom?

You who are planning to get or have already gotten your first puppy, you who have had a dog for many years but want to become a better dog owner, you who are passionate about learning more about dogs, you who want to understand dogs better, you who want to improve your dog training skills, you who want to take a gap year, etc.

Admission Criteria

You have a strong interest and a desire to learn about dogs from the ground up. It is not a hindrance if you do not have your own dog.

Course Structure

The course consists of 4 on-site study days per week and 1 day of distance learning.
Full-time studies: 25 hours per week

1 week of work placement is included in the studies, where the student works at a dog-related workplace.

Part 1 runs during the autumn semester of 2024, starting from August 19th to December 20th, 2024. After completing Part 1: Studies in Cynology, students can choose to continue their studies in Part 2: Advanced Studies in Cynology.

Application Periods and Individual Interviews

The application period for Part 1: Studies in Cynology is open from February 1st to August 11th, 2024.
All applicants will be called for a personal interview continuously after submitting their application. Students are admitted in the order in which applications are received, so apply well in advance to ensure your study place!


Part 2: Advanced Studies in Cynology

Part 2 is an advanced and deepening course in cynology. If you already have experience with dogs and learning methods from before or have completed an equivalent course such as Part 1: Studies in Cynology, this course part is for you. Part 2 focuses on learning psychology, takes a deeper look at dog language and signals, interspersed with advanced practical exercises. We also learn to solve problems that dog owners encounter with their four-legged friends. Additionally, a student’s dog may serve as a case study.


Target training
  • Dog Issues
  • Advanced Learning Psychology
  • Advanced Practical Exercises – New!
  • Analysis of Students’ Dogs
  • In-Depth Breed Recognition
  • Enrichment
  • Genetics & Breeding
  • Canine Anatomy and Physiology
  • Wellness: Veterinary Lecture on Diseases
  • Project Dog
  • Training Other Animals – New!
  • Dog Citizen Test: Training and Testing on Students’ Dogs – New!
  • Planning Your Own Course
  • Final Thesis
  • 2 Weeks Work Placement
  • Study Trip in Spring 2025

For whom?

You who have experience with dogs, want to learn about dogs in depth, want to learn how to train with your dog in an effective and enjoyable way, want to be able to solve dog problems, want to help train other people’s dogs.

Admission Criteria

Experience with dogs, completion of studies in Part 1: Studies in Cynology or a similar course.

Course Structure

The course consists of 4 on-site study days per week and 1 day of distance learning.
Full-time studies: 25 hours/week

2 weeks of work placement are included in the studies, where the student works with a dog trainer, dog consultant, dog school, or similar workplace.

In spring, there is a study trip abroad to volunteer at dog shelters. This gives students the opportunity to practice their skills in practical dog knowledge.

Part 2 is organized during the spring semester of 2025, from January 7th, 2025 to May 23rd, 2025.

Application Periods and Individual Interviews

The application period for Part 2: Advanced Studies in Cynology opens in October 2024.
If you apply for Part 1, you can already reserve a spot for Part 2 at that time.
All applicants will be called for a personal interview continuously after submitting their application. Students are admitted in the order in which applications are received, so apply well in advance to ensure your study place!

Professional Qualification and Further Studies

After completing studies in both Part 1 and Part 2 of the Dog Consultant program, the student has a solid foundation for further studies in the Animal Trainer – Professional Degree in Animal Care program. It may also be possible to solely undertake the professional exam in order to qualify for the degree, through an educational provider.

Contact and further information

Chrusse and Reymond

Programme Director:
Christina “Chrusse” von Pfaler fm biologist, dog therapist
Phone +358 (0)50 3472 596 |
During the summer contactable by email.

Borgå folkakademi / Runebergsgatan 16-18 in the centre of Borgå.

Language of instruction:
The language of instruction is Swedish, but assignments and similar stuff can also be done in Finnish and English. Some lessons are also in English, based on the teacher’s language skills.

Tuition fee:
400 €/month including lessons, lunch and afternoon coffee.
Costs for study materials and possible study trips are additional. (We reserve the right to change prices).

For students from Sweden and Norway, we would like to remind you that the program is eligible for CSN (Swedish National Board of Student Aid) and Lånekassen (Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund).

(The fees apply to the academic year 2024-25)

If you require accommodation, you can stay in the school’s dormitory adjacent to the school.
Cost: 200€/month for a shared double room and 260€/month for a single room, including breakfast (Mon-Fri) and dinner (Mon-Thu). (We reserve the right to change prices).

In addition, there is a fee of €50/term for those who have dogs in the dormitory.
Additional information about accommodation and costs can be found here.

Please indicate during the application if you intend to bring your own dog or not. For students planning to stay in the dormitory, please be aware that we have restrictions on the number of dogs allowed in the dormitory.

Never mind the dog. Beware of the owner

We reserve the right to make changes to the content and offerings in our courses and educational programs.

“Check what previous students have said about the education by clicking here!”

 Hundar som representerar skolan
Dogs representing the school

Dog Consultant (Hundkonsult) is an education for you who wants to know more about dogs, want to learn to better understand them, perhaps you have dreams about working in the canine industry and working with positive learning methods!

During the training we will deepen our understanding of dog’s natural behaviour, dog language, dog illnesses, different learning methods, Click training, problem solving and how to solve such things, enriching versus activating, dog’s heritage, puppy development, puppy training, wellness, breed awareness and breeding. On the course we also discuss animal welfare and ethics behind different learning methods.

We present different hobbies with dogs and practical training with your own/or other’s dogs. A study trip will happen during the spring semester.

The course leader is FM biologist and canine therapist Christina von Pfaler and as a guest teacher we now and then have canine expert and trainer Noga Ronen from Israel (teaching in English). NB! The course is intended for studying adults (18+).

Feedback about the dog consultant program by student Linda from Sweden:

“ I had been looking for an extensive dog training education for a long time and when I saw Akan’s dog consultant I did not hesitate to apply. I knew I wanted to work with dogs and my hope was that the training would give me the knowledge required. The academic year gave me not only that but also a memory for life. Being able to live, study and hang out with other dog-loving people is hard to beat. What I liked most was that it included a lot of dog training and that one’s own dog was included in the training.

Today I work at a dog daycare in Stockholm and am grateful that I got the chance to complete my dog ​​training at Akan. I often think back to the year in Porvoo and remember it as the best year of my life. I highly recommend Akan’s dog consulting program to anyone who wants a real dog year. ”

“Our dog consultant students operate Borgå DogCare, which offers services for pets and their owners.”

Dog Consultants on social media