Duration: 20 hours (2 days in-person & 5 hours adjunct e-course + assigned readings )

Cost: $750 + GST

We are committed to professional excellence in the field of Child-Centered Animal-Assisted Therapy. We have developed in-depth certification program that focuses on joining animals and children that promotes healing, connection, and growth. We strive to ensure the safety of both the client and the animal assistant, by honouring the human-animal bond, the attachment needs of the child, all while endorsing the highest levels of professional competence needed to facilitate this sacred work. This training is the first step to certification through CCAATA.

In this introductory training, practitioners will be introduced to CCAATA philosophy, principles, and ethics. 

Objectives include:

  • Engage in exploratory exercises to introduce CCAATA Practitioners to the therapeutic work of Animal-Assisted Therapy
  • Explore the role of attachment when working with children and adolescents
  • Outline safety considerations when working with animals and humans
  • Explore the role of animals as assistants and partners in the healing process

2023 Trainings: TBA

Duration: 30 hours  (3 days in-person &  6 hours adjunct e- learning and assigned reading)

Cost: $1550 + GST

Purpose: This training offers a more in-depth exploration of the CCAAT model and offers concrete strategies in developing a CCAAT professional practice. 

Objectives include:

  • Explore CCAAT concepts and principles
  • Learn adjunct strategies to foster positive mental health outcomes in children and adolescents
  • Explore and review fundamental mental health concerns facing children and adolescents
  • Engage in hands-on practice sessions with cohort members
  • Develop an understanding of animal behaviour and communication and how it pertains to the therapeutic process
  • Identify appropriate Levels of Expertise and individual Scopes of Practice
  • Develop appropriate safety protocols for professional practice

2022 Trainings: 

  • September 30- October 2, 2022: Millet, AB

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Duration: 30 hours (5 days)

Cost: $1550 + GST

Purpose: In this training, CCAAT Practitioners will further their exploration of the CCAAT model while focusing on more depth-based, process-oriented work. 

Objectives include:

  • Integrate and demonstrate knowledge of CCAAT concepts and principles
  • Creation of an in-depth Professional Practice Plan
  • Learn advanced strategies to foster positive mental health outcomes in children
  • Explore specific mental health concerns facing children and how to adjust your practice to help facilitate positive mental health outcomes
  • Engage in practice sessions with cohort members
  • Develop a personal Scope of Practice and Professional Development Plan
  • Explore a variety of case studies

2023 Trainings: 

  • TBA


*Addititional hours in Adjunct Coursework or equivalent coursework is required for full certification with CCAATA                                *Adjunct coursework hours may be obtained prior to and during enrollment of Fundamentals Training

Number of Hours: 20

Purpose: Allows Practitioners to process past history, past experiences, and countertransference for the purpose of better understanding themselves as individuals, understanding the viewpoint of the client, as well as to reduce projection in the therapeutic relationship. 

Practitioners are encouraged to engage in the following options:

  • 5-10 hours of engagement in an Animal-Assisted Therapy focused program, retreat, or individual coaching session(s)
  • 5-10 hours of personal therapy/counselling from a licensed mental health professional
  • 5-10 hours of a personal wellness program, retreat, or coaching (may be non-animal related)

Number of Hours: 12

Purpose: To understand developmentally appropriate interventions that foster positive mental health outcomes.


  • Introduction to Play Therapy Fundamentals (Offered Through the Institute of Child Psychology)                                                             OR
  • 12 Credit hours (CEU/CEC’s) in play therapy training approved by CACPT or APT



  • Therapeutic Play (9 hours)  (Offered Through the Institute of Child Psychology)                                                                 AND 
  • 3 Credits in an Undergraduate Level Psychology Course


Number of Hours: 20

Purpose: To understand animal communication specific to the species you intend on utilizing in your practice.  A minimum of 5 hours *per* species used is required. Should you be working with more than 5 species of animals, you will be required to obtain additional course work.

Hours may be obtained from a variety of live or online programs (accredited University courses recommended).  Up to 10 hours can be obtained by working 1:1 with an animal behavioural specialist whose expertise is specific to the therapy animal species you are interested in working with. 

Credit Hours: 3.5

Attachment is the deep emotional bond between a caregivers and children. This paradigm also continues to endure and shift into the arena of adult relationships and has a lasting impact on our psychology. An attachment relationship that is characterized by warm, sensitive, attuned, and consistent caregiving lays the foundation for resilience, security, compassion, emotion intelligence, and healthy relationship— it is considered the hallmark of psychological well-being.

In this 3.5 hour course, attendees will learn about the foundational history of attachment research, develop a better understand attachment styles in both children and adults and outcomes related to each style, how the brain’s development is contingent on the quality of care a child receives, and interventions that promote a more secure attachment style in children.

Parents and caregivers will walk away with a holistic and comprehensive view of attachment, and understand to be more intentional in their day to day interactions with their child


  • Explore early research in attachment
  • Define maternal deprivation and understand how lack of quality attachments can lead to failure to thrive
  • Describe the primary attachment styles in both children and adults, and the outcomes related to each
  • Learn about how attachment is related to neurological development in children
  • Explore how ruptures occur in the attachment relationship
  • Cultivate a greater understanding of their own attachment history and how it impacts their ability to parent.
  • Define a variety of evidence-based attachment interventions 


Number of Hours: 3 hours

Purpose:  CCAATA believes it is imperative that Practitioners examine ways in which Animal-Assisted Therapy can benefit children and adolescents, while conducting work in a way that honours both the clients’ safety as well as the integrity and safety of the animal assistant. CCAATA believes it is essential that the Practitioner fully understands and recognizes each animal assistant as a sentient being with needs and rights of their own, and not just as tools for humans use.

This online, self-paced course is under development. 

Enrollment available: September 2022