Texas Academy of Animal Control Officers
Basic Animal Care Tech (BACT) 36 hours $850.00
The BASIC-ACT Course is specifically designed for the individual that is currently working in, or seeking to work in an animal (City/County, Humane Society, Animal Rescue) care facility. This course is a full 36 hours (4.5 days) in length. The BACT includes the following training, to well prepare you for working in any animal care facility or even in a vet clinic, as we have combined our ACT and SMT Courses. This course is structured much like a CNA Course is for humans.
• Medical Terminology • Anatomy & Physiology • Parasitology• Animal Health, Nutrition, & Responsible Pet Ownership • Breed Recognition • Animal Behavior • Handling & Restraint • Common Illnesses & Injuries • Calculations & Common Medications • Fluid Administration • Sanitation • Certified Euthanasia Technician
ACO Level 1-3 Combo Course 28 hours $400.00
The ACO Level 1-3 is a unique course structured for the “Beginner” Working ACO/ACT. It includes the DSHS “Basic” Certification (16 hours), Professionalism & Ethics, Animal Cruelty Investigations, Officer Safety & Survival and the DSHS approved Certified Euthanasia Technician Course. This gives an officer everything needed (the two state certifications) in one course. This course prepares a new officer to do a better, safer and more professional job. When taken together like this, there is a savings of $50.00 over taking them separately.
DSHS Approved Basic ACO Course & EXAM 16 hours $200.00
Although all of the courses we offer are Dept of State Health Services approved, the Basic ACO Course is the one for state certification as an ACO Officer. This 14 hour (two day) course is more in depth in its training. It covers all the DSHS required elements and then some listed in THSC#829.
Extensive Review by each participant of the DSHS Animal Control Officer Training Manual is required prior to attending the course and exam.
In the afternoon of the second day, the Basic ACO Exam will be administered. Results of the exam will be given the same day.
Advanced ACO Training Course (Level 2) 16 hours $250.00
This course is approved by TACA for certification and DSHS only as continuing education credit as per SEC 829 of the THSC. The Advanced ACO training Course is the second level of three levels of progressive training courses for ACOs. You also earn CE credit for this course. The course includes a great amount of animal health and nutrition, disease recognition and control and treatment, shelter protocol, shelter sanitation, rabies control.
Requirements: Complete the BASIC ACO course with a minimum 1 year of service as a Basic Certified ACO.
Administrative ACO Training Course (ADMIN)(Level 3) 12 hours $250.00
This course is approved by TACA for certification and DSHS only as continuing education credit as per SEC 829 of the THSC. The Administrative ACO Course is the next (3rd) level of training for ACOs. This course deals primarily with ACO and Animal Shelter administrative duties. Subjects such as Shelter Management, budgeting, increasing adoptions in-house and off site, forming volunteers and foster groups, grant writing and dealing with governing bodies.
Requirements: Completed the Basic and Advanced ACO courses and a minimum of 1 full year of service as a Certified ACO or ACT.
Basic Animal Cruelty Investigations Course 8 hours $150.00
This is the first level of our Animal Cruelty Investigation courses. It is designed for the beginner, as a basic introduction to investigating a cruelty to animal's case. It is very in depth in procedures for taking the initial call and starting the initial investigation. It stresses the importance of working with the violator for the best interest of the animal(s) in question, first before legal action is required to seize the animal(s). City Ordinances verses state law in working an ACI case, along with the crime photography and evidence gathering are covered at length, as well. Case file preparation with an in depth official offense report writing section is included. We suggest, if you are a peace officer or have previous experience in working ACI cases, feel free to bypass the "Basic" level and take the "Advanced" ACI.
Advanced Animal Cruelty Investigations Course 12 hours $250.00
You may have taken a number of animal cruelty investigation courses in the past, but we assure you, you have never taken one like this. The TAACO Advanced Animal Cruelty Investigations course is like no other. It is a full 12 hours of in depth training in Criminal and Civil Law, pertaining to animal cruelty due to either neglect or malicious intent. Blood sports (dog & cock fighting) are covered, as well as pet hoarding/collecting. Every aspect of animal cruelty and/or abuse is covered. Civil seizure processes and laws are covered and dealing with the care, custody and control of the seized animals, along with the appellate process. Professionalism and ethics, photography, report writing, courtroom testimony and total case preparation are included. A block of instruction on state law vs. local ordinances is also covered. The importance of having good, strong, well written local ordinances is highly stressed. This will assist in possibly handiling the "cruelty" situation from a Class "C" misdemeanor level instead of a higher court. Also, this may well aid in stopping the cruel act before it gets worse, or stopping the violator from possessing/owning another animal. A substantial block on animal health and nutrition (small and large) is also included. This allows the officer to better eduacate the offender to possibly gain compliance rather than having to seize the animals. Animal condition scoring and veterinary evaluations are covered. With the dramatic increase in large animal (particularly Equine) neglect and cruelty, an in depth block of large animal anatomy, health and nutrition is included. We have never seen this in any other ACI course attended. Most students learn more about equine/bovine here, than any where else in their career training. Familiarization with all the required legal documents/paperwork to properly file an animal cruelty case is included. Once this course is completed, the student will be able to put together a complete prosecutable animal cruelty case, from start to finish. ACO's or PO's can use the knowledge to prepare a case ready for adjudication. We provide the student with a complete manual, copies (hard & electronic) of all the documents needed to file the case, and technical/personal assistance. If needed, we can be available onsite for further assistance. We strongly recommend this course for all ACO's, PO's, Judges, especially municipal and JP's. Rescue groups are also eligible to attend this class. This way everyone involved is on the same page in working an ACI case, and it makes the process much easier on everyone in preparing and adjudicating the case.
This ACI Course is unique to any other. It not only contains all the Criminal and Civil law aspect of animal seizure and making a prosecutable cruelty case, but is very in depth in small and large animal anatomy and health and nutrition. Animal condition scoring and medical evaluations are also taught. This course is very informative.
Certified Euthanasia Technician 12 hours $250.00
This course is one and one-half days long. TAACO teaches the curriculum as prescribed and approved by the Texas Department of State Health Services, Zoonosis Control Division. We have the required classroom curriculum and an extensive hands-on practical block of instruction on performing euthanasia. It also includes a rabies decap and necropsy demonstration. Drug licensing, ordering, safety and security are also taught.
Certified Euthanasia Technician (Re-Cert) 8 hours $150.00
This 8 hour course meets the requirements of the state of Texas for anyone re-certifying as a euthanasia technician. Euthanasia certification has to be renewed every 3 years.
Officer Safety & Survival/Bite Stick & Pepper Spray 8 hours $150.00
This course is designed to teach the ACO how to better recognize danger and how to avoid and/or deal with it when necessary. Officer safety should be priority #1, use your mind as a weapon. The Bite Stick (ASP) portion of the training is a combination of the penal law and SOP’s regarding the possession and use. Segments on the proper way to use these tools to protect yourself against an aggressive animal and possibly a person in the line of duty are taught. The OC Spray portion deals with the use and effects of OC spray on animals as well as humans. Proper use and decontamination are also taught. If your department allows you and you choose to carry these tools in your duties as an ACO; this training is a valuable asset from the liability standpoint as well as officer safety.
Chemical Capture & Restraint 8 hours $250.00
This course contains the methods of delivery as used in the ACO field. It also is heavy in the legal requirements, pharmacology, security and safety of the drugs used. Methods used to sedate or immobilize an animal for medical or safety reasons including drug mixtures are taught. The practical hands on with the equipment and safety are stressed as are the correct dosages. This course is great for anyone wanting to safely and correctly use chemical capture as a means to deal with wild, domestic, or nuisance animals.
Basic Shelter Tech (BST) 8 hours $175.00
Designed to train persons that are currently working in a (City/County, Humane Society, Animal Rescue) animal care facility. The BST includes the following training, to well prepare you for working in any animal care facility or even a vet clinic.
This course will greatly familiarize you with the common practices and procedures in the day to day workings of an animal care facility, especially in a shelter environment. This is also very helpful information in taking care of your own personal pets; you may very well save thousands of dollars by learning how and what to do for yourself.
Shelter Management (SMT) 8 hours $175.00
This course is a must for anyone managing, or desiring to promote into management of an animal shelter facility; especially those just starting out. The SMT covers all pertinent aspects important to prepare for shelter management and/or operations.
ACO Supervisor Training Course 8 hours $150.00
ACS Course is an in depth introduction into the important duties, rules and regulations that are required to be followed by a person acting as an Animal Control Officer and/or as the Local Rabies Control Authority for a city or county. As a Supervisor, one must know what the field personnel are required to do. This course is offered exclusively by TAACO.
Dangerous Vicious Dog & Bite Investigation 4 hours $75.00
This four hour course is designed for POs, but it is TCOLE, DSHS, approved and recommended for ACOs also. The need for proper training on how to possibly better handle a call for service involving an aggressive-vicious dog, as well as investigating an animal bite and rabies law requirements are taught. Education is the key to officer and animal safety. If lethal force does not have to be used, that is best for all. As we know, this can become a media nightmare. Training may also prevent litigation.
Equine Recognition & Familiarization 8 hours $175.00
Extensive anatomy, husbandry, health and nutrition, along with behavior, handling, colors and markings are taught. This is a great course for those whose knowledge is limited in Equine. Everything you ever wanted to know about a horse and more.
Equine 101 (EQ1) 8 hours classroom portion only $175.00
This is the ultimate equine familiarization course. It deals predominately with horses but also covers other equine. It includes familiarization with anatomy, physiology, nutritional and health requirements, including common disease recognition, prevention and treatments, parasitology, common injuries, an in depth study of the equine digestive system, reproductive tract, proper hoof/foot, (laminitis) dental/teeth care.
This course will not only assist you in your knowledge of the most neglected/abused large domestic animal, but allow you to talk intelligently and educate the public you may encounter that have equine that are not being properly cared for. It goes briefly into making a prosecutable criminal case for animal cruelty and condition scoring.
Equine 101 (EQ1) (classroom and hands-on training) 12 hours $250.00
This is 12 CE hours of complete educational training on all Equine. Classroom portion is the same as the 8 hour Equine 101 class, however, this includes 4 hours of hands on training.
It includes familiarization with anatomy, physiology, nutritional and health requirements, including common disease recognition, prevention and treatments, parasitology, common injuries, an in depth study of the equine digestive system, reproductive tract, proper hoof/foot, (laminitis) dental/teeth care and condition scoring. It goes briefly into making a prosecutable criminal case for animal cruelty. (open to all rescue groups)
Parasitology 4 hours $125.00
This 4 hour course includes Parasite identification, Microscope use and Parasite treatment options. Our main objective is to give each student the basic understanding of parasites, their affect on animals and treatment options. The basic working knowledge to test for parasites and the basic knowledge to prevent and treat for parasite infestation is covered.
Herpetology Familiarization & Handling (HFH) 4 hours $100.00
This course is designed to educate the student in the recognition and proper handling of all reptiles, such as snakes, turtles, lizards, and alligators. Proper housing, feeding and care for the animals are covered in this course. A hands-on practical block of instruction is also included.
Zoonotic Diseases Course One (ZD-1) 16 hours $250.00
Course One covers 12 zoonotic diseases that may be encountered by animal control officers and shelter technicians. The diseases covered are as follows: Anthrax Brucellosis Cat Scratch Disease Campylobacter Cryptosporidium
Giardia Leptospirosis Lyme Disease Q-Fever Rabies Plague Streptococcus
Each in-depth disease discussion involves what the disease is, how it affects animals and humans, diagnosing the disease in animals and humans, treatment options, as well as safety and prevention protocols. This course is appropriate for anyone currently working in the animal care and control industry. Course two is currently being developed, and will be available later in 2017 once DSHS approval has been given.
Mental Health Training Course (MHT) 8 hours ($150.00)
We are now making this course available for ACOs as well as POs. The likelihood of an ACO coming into contact with a complainant and/or violator that is suffering with a mental illness is just as likely as it is for a peace officer. Many times the ACO is totally alone in their duties. This eight hour course is designed to educate the ACO field officer as well as the ACT in the ability to better recognize the signs and symptoms of the four most commonly encountered mental illness, and how to better and safely deal with those people. Recognizing the difference of a subject on an intoxicating substance and someone that is suffering from a mental illness with and without medication, can truly be an officer safety issue.
Compassion Fatigue (CFAT) 8 hours ($150.00)
This course is designed to aid animal care workers in recognizing, defining, preventing, and treating compassion fatigue within themselves, or in others. It will cover the following: defining compassion fatigue and burnout; reasons these conditions occur; physical, mental, and emotional symptoms related to both conditions; the link between compassion fatigue and depression; the link between animal euthanasia and suicide; and managed self-care evaluation and implementation. Self-tests are administered during this course, but are not graded or evaluated by the instructor. They are indicators for students to gauge their level of stress, burn out, and compassion fatigue, and are used by the student in their managed self-care.
This course is open to any person involved in animal welfare in any capacity. No minimum employment time is required for this course. Animal control and animal shelter supervisors are especially encouraged to attend as to better understand their employees, and their employee’s needs to prevent compassion fatigue.
**Adult topics that may be considered controversial are discussed within this course. Group discussion is encouraged, but participation is not mandatory for those that are uncomfortable openly sharing their experiences aloud.
All TAACOs courses are taught at a hosting location! Call for details and group rates!