Payments & Refund Policy

A non-refundable deposit is due at the time of registration and tuition in full is due two weeks prior to the start of class. Any required deposit is applied to the full class tuition cost. Students receive their course materials once tuition in full is received. No financial assistance or payment plan is available. Tuition balance is refundable if the student withdrawals at least two weeks prior to the start of class. If the student withdrawals less than two weeks prior to the start of class or after the program has begun, tuition is non-refundable, unless the withdrawal is due to extenuating circumstances. Extenuating circumstances include illness, injury, bereavement, military obligations, or other if approved by the Chicago School of Canine Massage Board of Directors. Any extenuating circumstance must be submitted in writing to Chicago School of Canine Massage and approved by the Board of Directors.

Courses are subject to cancellation by Chicago School of Canine Massage due to limited enrollment, one week prior to the program start date. If a program is cancelled by Chicago School of Canine Massage, students are subject to a full tuition refund or can enroll in a future program.

Chicago School of Canine Massage reserves the right to cancel a program up to 24 hours before the program start date due to act of nature, natural disasters, act of war, contagious pathological outbreaks (both human and canine), or other if deemed appropriate by the Chicago School of Canine Massage Board of Directors. If a program is cancelled, students will have the opportunity to enroll in a future program.


If you are traveling to a class location from out of town, you will need to make arrangements for accommodations. Your program costs do not include transportation, meals or lodging.

Welcome Letter & Information Packet

Once you have been accepted into the program, agree to the term and conditions of the Liability and Risk Waiver, and we receive your deposit we will send you a welcome letter and information packet by email that includes a syllabus, details about local accommodations, and other pertinent information regarding the program or workshop you will be attending. Once tuition is paid in full, we will send a PDF of the course manual and power point presentations of many of the lectures which you can print out and bring to class with you, if you choose. We are environmentally conscious and do not provide a hard copy of any program materials.  

Before registering for a class, we strongly encourage you read the individual state law pertaining to the state in which you intend to practice. Please note that state laws change constantly and are often left up to interpretation. CSCM, its owners and employees will not be held accountable for any information gained from any source. 

Placement Assistance

The Chicago School of Canine Massage does not have a placement assistance program upon completion of programs. However, CSCM is more than happy to provide students with letters of completion, certifications, and letters of recommendation.

Completion of Materials for Certification

Students are required to complete all program coursework within six months of class start date to receive certification. An established due date will be provided on your class syllabus. All materials submitted after due date will be classified as incomplete. A student who receive an incomplete will be required to retake a CSCM program for certification status.

Missed or Make-up Hours

In a certification program, the attending of all classes is required. Make-up work is the responsibility of each individual student. Missed hours MUST be made up. The course director will work with the student in scheduling the make up hours. All missed “hands on” hours will be completed through private instruction at $60/hour.

Starting Salary for a Canine Massage Therapist

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), animal service providers in a non-farm environment earned a median annual salary of $19,910 as of May 2013 ( The middle half of employees in this group earned between $17,880 and $24,650, or $8.59 and $11.85 hourly.

According to the BLS, job opportunities for animal care and service workers were expected to grow 15% from 2012-2022. This is slightly faster than the average for all professions, partially due to the fact that both pet ownership and pet owners’ disposable incomes are expected to increase.

Employment opportunities for Canine Massage Therapists are available in the following careers: private practice, veterinary hospital, physical rehabilitation facility, grooming, boarding, agility, and animal shelter.

Licensing requirements for animal massage therapists vary by state, with qualifying practice hours ranging from 100-500. Animal massage therapy might be part of regular veterinary medicine licensure in some states, while others have no explicit requirements. Regulations might be dictated by the same state organization that oversees massage therapy for humans. Training and certificate programs are available and might be required for animal massage practitioners. These include a combination of coursework and contact hours.

Certificate Transferability

The Chicago School of Canine Massage programs, including: Level 1 Canine Massage Foundations, Level 2 Canine Massage, 10 Month Advanced Canine Massage, Mentorship Advanced Canine Massage, Post-Surgical Massage and Edema Management for Veterinary Professionals, have all been recognized by the National Board of Certification for Animal Acupressure and Massage (NBCAAM).

National Board of Certification for Animal Acupressure and Massage (NBCAAM) endeavors to provide examinations that reflect and uphold the highest professional standards of practice for animal acupressure and massage. To that end, the examinations are available to people who have completed specialized animal training programs in either or both disciplines. Upon successful completion of the examination in the chosen discipline, the practitioner will be deemed a knowledgeable and professional animal acupressure or massage practitioner and will be recognized as such by noted professionals practicing in that particular field.

If a student is interested in transferability of certification to other institutions of higher education, please consult with said institution for transfer approval.

Institutional Counterparts

At this time, the Chicago School of Canine Massage does not have any institutional arrangements with counterparts within the industry. However, The Chicago School of Canine Massage will provide any evidence of articulation arrangements with institutional counterparts, when future arrangements exist.

Student Complaints

For any general concerns, grievances, or disputes, please contact:

Students can access all applicable content on the Chicago School of Canine Massage website at