The National Animal Care and Control Association (NACA) is the leading professional association committed to growing the level of professionalism in the field on Animal Care and Control.

As part of our mission, we are committed to offering working Animal Care professionals the education they need to grow in fulfilling, mission-driven careers that serve both their communities and the animals they care about.

If you’re ready to take the next step in your career, consider investing in your future by earning your ACO II Certification

ACOs - Ready to Grow in Your Career?

Why Do I Need a NACA Certification?

There are many reasons why you might want to go through the NACA Certification courses.

  • star If your state already has a state-issued certification requirement, a NACA Certification is a nice complement to your local requirements, and could serve as fulfillment of CEU requirements.
  • star Even if your state does not require any form of certification, a NACA Certification can provide you a foundation of knowledge – and “fill in the gaps.”
  • star If you’re building your resume in preparation for future career advancement, a NACA Certification can be proof that you are committed to growing in your professional skills and knowledge.

Do I Need to Take NACA ACO I Before ACO II?

The short answer is No. The NACA Training Board took special care to ensure that the ACO II course could stand on it's own. Of course, if you would like to take both courses together, there is an option below that offers an additional $50 discount. More details about ACO I can be found here.

What's Included?

Your online ACO II Certification Course is filled with more than 20 hours of instruction, activities and exercises designed to help you grow and succeed in your role.

Designed for the busy working professional, each lesson is divided into 5-10 bite sized “topics” that can be completed in 10-20 minutes each. Here are the six major topic we cover in this course.

Canine Encounters

Canine Encounters

Led by renown expert, Jim Crosby, this canine encounters program provides over six hours of deep-dive instruction about the safe and successful navigation of the most commonly experienced dog encounters that ACOs face.

Animal Fighting

Animal Fighting

Taught by experienced investigators and prosecutors in the field, the Animal Fighting portion of the ACO II program includes over five hours of practical instruction covering both cock fighting and dog fighting investigation and prosecution



Taught by Licensed Psychologist Dr. Kimberly Miller and Denise Beagley, at ASU's Center for Applied Behavioral Health Policy, these three lessons will help your officers learn how to use calming language to diffuse, re-direct, or de-escalate a conflict situation.


Animal Hoarding

Animal hoarding is more than just an animal cruelty case. It reveals a community member who is disturbed and deeply in need of assistance. These two lessons discuss what animal hoarding is in both legal and psychological terms, the investigation and intervention of the case, as well as potential and appropriate remedies.

Large Animal Investigations

Large Animal

Large animal investigations are unique and as diverse as the large animal/farm animal realm itself. These two lessons will begin your exploration of large animals – specifically horses and other farm animals – and provide an orientation for investigations into large animal cruelty or neglect cases.

Field and Forensics

Field and Forensics

ACOs often find themselves routinely conducting inspections as part of a myriad of different types of cases. These two lessons will explore how to go through the inspection process, along with helpful tips and tricks to make your job a little easier.

Ready to Sign up?

Yeah, But What Are the Lessons Like?

Lessons Sample
We get it
No one wants to buy something sight unseen – or as they used to say, “a pig in a poke.”
“Bite Sized”
Each lesson is “bite sized” just so you can do a little bit each day in order make progress towards your goals!
Starts with an Overview
Virtually every lesson starts with an overview introductory page that shares what the lesson is about and provides a sense of the things that will be covered in the course.
A Video Lesson

A video lesson to begin your learning.

Additional Content

With additional content such as review material, interactive exercises or memorable quotes to reinforce your learning.

Pro Tips

We often include inset boxes to help you connect the dots between the various lessons you are taking, and occasional “Pro Tips” your instructors are sharing to help make your job just a little bit easier …

Reminders top apply what you are learning to your agency

... And all along the way, we share reminders to apply what you’re learning to your own agency.

Added Bonus

As an added bonus, from time to time you’ll even see additional resources, white papers, or other related webinars listed – just in case you’re inspired to learn more about a given topic.

Knowledge Checks

We also include little “Knowledge Checks” along the way to help reinforce what you need to know for each Lesson’s final quiz (5-10 questions).

These questions also help you to prepare for your cumulative, end of course final certification exam.

But don’t stress: We do these intermediate steps so that nothing on the quizzes, or the final exam, are ever a surprise. We want you to succeed!

Meet Your Instructors

The lessons are taught by some of the industry’s thought leaders – people you might only get to hear at a national conference or read about in industry magazines.

“Our instructors are folks who have been there. They’ve seen what ACOs and those in Law Enforcement are facing and are able to help prepare you to be successful in your career.” Scott Giacoppo, NACA President

Our subject matter experts include investigators, prosecutors, NACA Board Members and Leadership, and a range of Animal Control Professionals from across the US to share their first-hand experience and expertise to help you be successful.

Our instructors include:

Denise Beagley

Denise Beagley

Arizona State University

Mike Brown

Mike Brown

National Sheriffs’ Association

Jim Crosby

Jim Crosby

Canine Encounter Training Director, NLECAA

Adam Leath

Adam Leath

Volusia County Animal Services

Diane Robinson

Diane Robinson

Humane Society of the United States

Richard Samuels

Richard Samuels

Spotsylvania County Sheriff’s Office

Amy 'Opie' Taylor

Amy “Opie” Taylor

Virginia Animal Fighting Task Force

Michelle Welch

Michelle Welch

Virginia Attorney General’s Office

**Not pictured: Audra Houghton with Humane Society of the United States

Animal Care

The NACA Certification is designed specifically for working adults in the Animal Care/Control profession.

What’s more: Every lesson in the course has been reviewed by NACA’s training committee consisting of resident experts who are committed to enhancing and growing our profession. So when you go through the lessons, you know you’re hearing expert advice from people you can trust.

Can’t Wait to Get Started?

What Do I Do If I Have Questions or Troubles?

We get it: If you’re used to learning strictly in a classroom environment, online learning might be a little scary at first.

But know that whether it’s a technical support issue or a question about something an instructor has said in a video, we’re here to help ensure you feel confident in your knowledge and development.

Here is a link to a handy list of Frequently Asked Questions - but don't hesitate to reach out if your question is not answered.

But I Already Work Full-time… Would I Have Time?

We hear you. Only you know about the demands of your job or if you can “juggle” the demands of work, family, and school.

That said, online courses are a great way to get the knowledge (and certification) you need for career growth, without being tied down to a specific schedule, being out of the office for days at a time, or burdened by the expense of high priced tuition or travel costs.

The NACA Certification is designed specifically for working adults in the Animal Care/Control profession. Split up into bite sized components, each lesson can be completed over a lunch break in a week’s time – sometimes less.

And don’t worry: if life gets in the way, you’ll have a whole year to complete the lessons on your own schedule.

What People Are Saying about This?

All of our instructors and contributors are not just experts in their own fields – they’re seasoned and experienced speakers and trainers.

Here’s just a few things that have been said about your instructors.

“All around, great information for a topic that is prevalent yet there are no a lot of resources for.”


"I loved the in-depth step by step process on building a single case and how all the evidence flows. Fantastic"


“How to prosecute animal cruelty cases in a manner that it sticks. Researching the Judge on their views and prior rulings on animal cruelty cases. Michelle is amazing!!!!”


“Humble experienced individuals who have common sense yet humane practices as Dave Pauli expressed- some things can’t be ‘taught’ in a book or class but rather shared through stories & field experiences. Thank you!”


“As a six-year equine cruelty investigator, in Illinois where livestock does not fall under companion animal humane laws, the information on cattle BCS was incredibly helpful to me, as horses and cattle can go hand and hand. The example of hock scoring was completely new to me, and I grabbed a quick screenshot for future reference. Audra is a great speaker, and very professional. Thank you for another fantastic JCH webinar!”


Sounds Great! So…. How much?

The NACA ACO II Course current price is $447 per person.

Current NACA Individual Members are eligible to receive a $100 off coupon - contact for details.

Ready to Get Started?

Are There Discounts Available?

Yes - please contact me for details on how to qualify for any of the following discounts:

  • 10-Seat Bulk Purchase: $1,995
  • NACA Members: $100 discount

How do I pay?

You can pay by credit card or debit card through our online check out.

For agencies paying by Purchase Order, or if your agency is wanting to certify 3 or more people (25% discount), please contact us at

How do I request a refund?

We are not able to offer refunds on any of our courses. However, if the initially assigned student has not started the course, we may be able to reassign the course to a new person.

How long will I be able to access the training materials?

Students have 12 months from the date of enrollment to complete the course. If you would like to request an extension, please contact us at least two months prior to expiration.

Am I guaranteed a certificate if I enroll in the course?

No. Students that carefully watch and review all of the video lessons and complete the end of lesson quizzes in good faith should be able to pass the final certification exam. That said, students who bypass the lesson videos and 'hack' their way through the end of lesson quizzes (trying each answer until they pass) will likely not be able to pass the final exam. With the purchase of this course, students are able to take the final exam twice - however, additional attempts are at the discretion of the course administrator (NACA and JCH) and may result in additional fees.

Is there a brochure for this course?

Yes! You can download a course brochure here

    ** The basic cost of the course is $397 but current NACA Individual Members are eligible to receive a $100 off coupon. Request your coupon code at
Brought To You By :
NACA Justice Clearinghouse
*NACA Certification may be eligible to meet the needs of your community. Please verify with your local POST or other ACO credentialing organization to see if the NACA Certification can be used for your credentialing, promotion processes, or continuing education units (CEUs).