Rules and Regulations

Code of Practice & Terms and Conditions for the Guild of Dog Trainers (GoDT)

The terms and conditions form the fundamentals of the contract and as such must signed by all successful applicants online when initial membership payment is made.

Members will be required to achieve and maintain the GoDT eminent standard of knowledge and skills and demonstrate good practice when dealing with clients, their dogs and the general public.

Membership is at the discretion of the GoDT Membership Committee and all successful applicants will be notified within 28 days of our office receiving the membership request.

GoDT members legally agree to comply with the following:

All members will agree to abide by the following set by the GoDT and this agreement is recurrent with any subsequent renewal of membership.

  1. Membership fees are payable annually in advance.
  2. The GoDT Membership certificate will be issued to the successful applicant and will be valid up to the date stated on the certificate.
  3. Once membership has been agreed, members are allowed to display the GoDT logo and include reference to the GoDT membership on stationery, websites and online material for the duration of membership, subject to the display being to a professional standard of presentation. The GoDT logo must not be portrayed as distorted. The logo should not be placed adjacent to or sufficiently close to any product or service advertisement or promotion that has not been endorsed by the GoDT. The logo may also be used to promote a member’s business that relates to pet dog training, dogs in film training, professional one to one dog training and the disciplines described on this web site only. The logo can not be used to promote security dog training or the supply of personal protection dogs.
  4. The GoDT reserve the right to withdraw membership at any time and without a reason being given. In the event of a membership being revoked, the member will be required to return the certificate by first class post.
  5. In the event of the Membership Committee accepting an application for a higher level of membership, the higher level fee will be payable at the next renewal date.
    Refunds for membership fees are made at the discretion of the GoDT.
  6. Refund in part or the full membership fee in the event of cancellation is at the sole discretion of the GoDT. Personal circumstances will be taken into consideration. In the event of a member becoming unable to continue in practice, due to incapacity or other serious health issues, a refund will be issued.
  7. All new applicants should employ at least 70% of their work in pet dog training and/or canine behavioural issues and this should be demonstrated on the applicants’ web site if appropriate or proven to the satisfaction of the GoDT committee whose decision to accept will be final.
  8. Newly accepted members will be required to submit information and photographs for the GoDT website. Failure to supply photographs and information within 14 days of acceptance will render the membership void. Website updates will occur at the end of each month.
  9. Members will agree to train all dogs and puppies in a fair, appropriate and humane manner, using methods of instruction that are professional and courteous at all times.
  10. Members will agree to acquire appropriate and adequate insurance to meet professional and public liability which should indemnify the GoDT in respect of any losses incurred by us through a members association.
  11. Members will agree to achieve and maintain a proficient level of awareness of English and/or Scottish Law relating to their activities with the public, clients and dogs.
  12. Members must not knowingly bring the GoDT into disrepute. Bringing the GoDT into disrepute can be as a result of a broken rule or a behavioural issue or conveying any image in membership marketing that the does not meet with the GoDT approval. This is especially true of web site information where the member may display the GoDT logo and/or web address. The GoDT organisation upholds extremely high standards and members viewed as bringing the organisation into disrepute would become the subject of a disciplinary hearing.
  13. Members will acknowledge that they hold a responsibility to their clients, to the public and to their dogs and that they will not knowingly cause distress or damage to any of their charges. Members will further agree to recommend or utilise training, instruction and equipment that is consistent with the breed type, temperament of the dog and behavioural problem or training issue that may be displayed by the dog.
  14. Members will agree to fully inform clients at all times of the nature and reasons of the utilisation of the equipment, the methods and techniques for dog training or behavioural modification of training and to maintain awareness in recognised good practice in training advice and proven practical experience.
  15. Members will agree that they will not convey unrealistic expectations or advice to their clients or action or recommend any issues where they are not suitably qualified, are unsure or unable to resolve a dog behavioural problem.
  16. Members should not continue to provide instruction, training or advice to a client and their dog, which is ineffective despite a genuine training effort being made. In such an issue, the member must urgently refer the dog to a suitably qualified behaviour practitioner who has specialist knowledge.
  17. Members will agree to maintain confidentiality at all times during professional communication with clients. The use of photographic, video and audio recording of clients and family members and pets are at the sole consent of the client.
  18. Members will agree not to act in such a way that may be deemed as detrimental towards a relationship with any other professional.
  19. Members will agree that employees of their organisation or individuals acting under their instruction or guidance in assistance with training or provision of advice will be encouraged to conform to the GoDT Terms and Conditions in order to maintain best practice.
  20. The GoDT reserve the right to employ “mystery shoppers” who may enrol on members courses or any other services related to membership status. This will be paid for by the GoDT and the process is used to assess that the information and training standard passed to the general public meet the GoDT professional principles as laid out herein. The mystery shopper will visit a trainer or could request information about courses or member offers. Good trainers should welcome this exercise as it gives them the opportunity to demonstrate their high standard of work without the pressure of a formal assessment.
  21. If any of the above are found to have been breached, the matter will be referred to the professional standards officer who will carry out a full investigation and decide if there is a case to be further investigated. Should further investigation be deemed necessary the GoDT complaints procedure will be implemented and appropriate action taken. The outcome would be dependent on the severity of the breach but could result in removal from the organisation, and in serious cases legal action may be taken.
  22. All members of the GoDT agree that any past criminal convictions in regard to animal cruelty or part of the animal welfare act need to be disclosed. It is also incumbent on a member to report immediately to the GoDT registrar any pending actions for the same animal welfare act even though they have not as yet been concluded in a court.
  23. The business that the member operates in any dog training/instructor discipline is contractually between the member and their client(s). The GoDT accepts no responsibility in any way for the services received or offered by a member and their client(s) to the pet dog owner.
  24. It is incumbent on all members to keep the GoDT up-to-date regarding their home address, telephone number and email.
  25. When using social media and stating that you are a GoDT member, you should be responsible and free from all personal abuse or passing on any derogatory information about any co-professional. Statements of fact must be evidenced (not hearsay). You agree to have read the information on this site in regard to use of social media within the dog training profession.
  26. Members fees to their clients should be clear and accessible to the public. No hidden fees.
  27. Non-compliance with the above described terms and conditions may result in suspension of your membership and/or disciplinary action under violations of the Code of Conduct.
  28. All communications between the GoDT and a member are protected under the Data Protection Act and all members agree not to distribute these communications in any form to third parties without the express permission of the GoDT.