What is the Practical Training Assistants (PTA) Course?

Aim of the Course

To provide students with the knowledge and skills necessary to assist dog trainers and handlers in man-work training techniques for protection dogs.

Facilitated by IDT(A).

Entry Standards

  • Private soldiers and all non-commissioned ranks.
  • IELTS level 6.
  • Experience in basic dog handling.


Five (5) days, with courses as required.


Defence Animal Centre (DAC) Melton Mowbray.

Outline of Course

On completion of the course, the dog handler will be capable of:

  • Applying general safety precautions when carrying out man work exercises for protection dogs.
  • Demonstrate the ability to use all types of baiting equipment.
  • Assist a Patrol Dog handler in the training and testing of Patrol in various man work scenarios.
  • Advise the dog handler on the most beneficial man work continuation training for his dog.
  • Select and set up an area for wind scenting, pick up and indication training.
  • Conducting all forms of continuation training in order to maintain the Unit dogs at a high standard of operational efficiency.

The Defence Animal Centre can sometimes provide trained dogs, but refer any queries on this to IDT(A).

Related Course: Patrol Dog Handler’s Course.

Qualifications Gained

A Pass Certificate is awarded to successful students.


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