Behavior Program Manager
Job Details
Bellevue - Bellevue, WA
Full Time
Nonprofit - Social Services


The Behavior Program Manager is responsible for the development and maintenance of the behavior program for both dogs and cats in the care of Seattle Humane.  They supervises department staff and oversee the recruitment, training, and support of program volunteers.  The Behavior Program Manager works under the direction of the Chief Behavior Officer to develop, implement, and evaluate department protocols and policies.  They provide leadership and support the mission, goals, and philosophy of Seattle Humane.


  • Supervises Behavior Program staff and program volunteers
    • Hires, trains, schedules, and motivates staff to provide for their growth and to maximize their potential for the good of the organization
    • Enables department to meet established goals and objectives
    • Maintains compliance with any safety, health, and labor regulations
    • Verifies that agency policies and procedures are being followed
    • Provides timely communication of department or agency updates to direct reports
    • Conducts performance reviews according to agency timelines
    • Conducts disciplinary meetings and maintains related documentation per HR guidelines
    • Ensures high standards of customer service and animal care
    • Works closely with the Director of Volunteers Services regarding volunteer position updates and recruitment needs
  • Recommends program changes to their direct supervisor for approval. Assists with creating procedures and protocols to support approved changes, overseeing implementation, and monitoring long-term impact.
  • Works with Animal Care Manager to identify and address behavior care needs within campus population.
  • Works with Foster Care Manager to implement and maintain behavior enrichment and training programs for foster parents.
  • Works with Intake Manager to manage intakes of dogs and cats with behavioral concerns.
  • Responds promptly to intake requests for behavioral euthanasia appointments.
  • Assesses and updates behavior holds daily.
  • Works with the Adoption Program Manager with regard to placement of dogs with behavior concerns up for adoption.
  • Works with Medical Director to discuss behavioral modification medication needs and updates other teams with progress.
  • Provides training on behavior, training, and enrichment topics and serves as a resource for staff and volunteers to ensure consistency and promote professionalism.
  • Creates behavior modification and training plans for pets in our care, oversees their implementation, monitors progress, and adjusts as necessary.
  • Oversees the Playgroup program including staff training and scheduling.
  • Assists in writing or editing communication when appropriate, such as, but not limited to, memos, procedural manuals, behavior plans, and handouts.
  • Maintains department statistics to track individual dog and programmatic progress.
  • Responsible for ensuring the emails to Cat and Dog Behavior in-boxes are responded to daily.
  • Participates in euthanasia decision-making. 
  • Maintains detailed and accurate behavior program procedural documentation, files, and records.  Adheres to the files and records retention policy and procedures.  
  • Prepares monthly reports and/or other data as requested by CBO or COO.
  • Submits department budget requests; follows established annual budget amounts for assigned accounts.


  • Conducts meetings within and between departments when necessary and attends all-staff and other meetings as requested.  Establishes meeting agendas in advance and has minutes taken and distributed as appropriate.
  • Actively participates in meetings or delegates responsibility when appropriate.
  • Attends Daily Rounds or delegates a representative when appropriate.
  • Answers incoming calls and responds to voicemail and email messages promptly and professionally.  Investigates customer complaints in a timely and objec­tive manner.
  • Assists with and/or instructs other classes and training as needed.
  • Creates webinars and handouts on behavior topics.
  • Monitors assigned inventory of behavior program supplies.  Orders regularly to ensure adequate supply.
  • Other duties as assigned.


  • Supervises Behavior Program staff.
  • Supervises program volunteers and volunteer program coordinators, serves as a key resource for behavior foster volunteers.


  • Daily verbal or written communication with staff and volunteers through direct contact, meetings, written procedures, email, memos, charts, signs, telephone or mail.
  • Daily or weekly contact with customers by telephone, email, direct contact or through the mail.
  • Weekly verbal or written communication with outside vendors or organizations by telephone, fax, email or direct contact.


High degree of independent judgment required.  The nature of the job will vary.  Must be able to coordinate staff and volunteers and remain focused on the agency goals and objectives.  Must be able to respond to unexpected questions, comments or requests from other departments or the general public. The ability to motivate, negotiate and mediate will be helpful when handling a variety of personalities and emotions. 



  • Experience in providing in-home behavior counseling for serious issues such as aggression, fear, and anxiety.
  • Proven knowledge and experience in teaching basic and advanced dog obedience using humane methods.  Proven knowledge and experience in advanced dog behavior modification.
  • Minimum of three years work experience in caring for and handling animals in a safe, effective and humane manner, especially larger and untrained pets.
  • Knowledge of various breeds and their characteristics and familiarity with symptoms of diseases common to dogs and cats.  Knowledge of contemporary shelter maintenance techniques and accepted sanitary practices.
  • Minimum of one year of experience working with community groups, volunteers and other nonprofit programs and organizations. Effective written and verbal communication skills.
  • Ability to communicate with the public, volunteers and co-workers in a pleasant, courteous and tactful manner at all times. 
  • Comfortable and skilled in working with culturally diverse staff, volunteers and community.
  • Excellent verbal, public speaking and telephone skills.
  • Organizational and planning skills to determine work priorities, schedules and time.
  • Must be proficient in Word, email and internet use; familiarity with shelter animal databases or equivalent.


  • Four-year college degree preferred. (One year of qualifying management work experience may be considered as an alternative for each year of education.)
  • Certified by a national organization such as CCPDT or working towards certification is required.
  • Valid Washington State drivers license without significant moving violations.


Must be able to analyze problems and determine the best solutions.  Must communicate clearly and concisely, both orally and in writing.  Requires the ability to make decisions under time constraints with (sometimes) limited information.  Must possess good attention to detail and be able to concentrate and produce accurate work despite frequent interruptions.  Needs to be sensitive to other opinions, perspectives or cultures.  Must feel comfortable in dealing with angry, confused and/or emotional people.  Must be able to stand for long periods of time; to lift and carry at least 40 pounds; to kneel, crouch, bend and reach.  Must possess good hand-eye coordination, agility and stamina.  Must possess good senses of hearing, vision, touch and smell.  Must exhibit initiative and motivation in performing all duties.


General office environment in addition to handling ani­mals, which presents the potential of animal bites, exposure to zoonotic diseases (diseases that can be transmitted from vertebrate animals to people), animal dander and noise. Potential for working with angry or emotional customers.

  • Equipment Use:  Computer, printer, fax, copy machine, multi-line telephone.  Animal restraint devices such as catchpoles, nets, gloves, leashes, harness, and muzzles. Occa­sional use of SH vehicles.  Occasional use of syringes and sharps.
  • Chemical Interaction:  A wide variety of cleaners, disinfectants, detergents and medical products are used on a daily basis.  Each position at the SH will likely encounter these chemicals during the routine performance of their duties.  Specific instructions will be provided by a SH staff member for the safe and proper use of these chemicals.  If there are any questions regarding this information, copies of our chemical MSDS sheets are available for review.  If asked to use a product that is unfamiliar, contact your supervisor for proper instructions.
  • Work Hours:  Full-time, 40 hours a week.  Must be willing to work some evening and/or weekend hours.  Attendance required at all-staff meetings and assigned training workshops or meetings.  Some travel may be required for trainings and/or conferences.