PACFA Qualifying and Continuing Education

CDA and PACFA are excited to launch the Qualifying (QE) and Continuing Education (CE) program that will establish a baseline of knowledge of the program rules and advance overall pet animal health, safety and welfare. 

Beginning November 1, 2021, as a condition for licensure all new applicants will be required to take the 4 Module Qualifying Education Course and current PACFA licensees will be required to take a continuing education course once every two years. 

This page provides a summary of the educational requirements and FAQs to address some of the more common questions about the new educational requirements.

Note: Information will be updated as the program progresses.

Find additional below in the QE and CE Summaries and FAQs section.

Please check your emails (and spam folders!) for future announcements on the Qualifying and Continuing Education Requirements. If you are not receiving emails and would like to be added to our mailing list, please click the Newsletter Signup box at the bottom of this page and fill out the form. 

Frequently Asked Questions


Starting on November 1, 2021, all new applicants (Primary Business Contact listed on the application) for a PACFA license will be required to complete the QE course prior to a pre-license inspection.  Once the application is successfully processed, access will be granted to the applicant to the PACFA Learning Management System (LMS) Portal.

  • New applicants for a PACFA license are required to take the QE course including, but not limited to: 
    • Brand new person/facility (applicant does not currently hold a PACFA license)
    • Change of ownership of a licensed facility
    • Change of Primary Business Contact/License Holder
  • The CE course will be required to be completed for current licensees starting in 2022. The first CE requirement will be to complete the 4 module QE course. After 2024, PACFA will hold stakeholder meetings to help develop future CE courses.  
  • Applicants that are submitting applications for a change of address or adding a license category and are currently licensed will not be required to take the QE course.

The QE and CE courses are designed to provide all licensees with a baseline of knowledge to help generate a better understanding  of the rules and regulations, physical facility standards, cleaning and sanitation, animal care, veterinary care, recordkeeping, and transportation and import requirements. Providing this type of education will lead to better compliance, enhance the health, safety, and welfare of animals in pet care facilities and provide  better protection for consumers that use pet-related-services in Colorado.  

  • The QE course is designed to ensure that all new applicants understand the PACFA rules and regulations, facility standards, standards of animal care, recordkeeping and other requirements of the Pet Animal Care Facilities Act and the rules and regulations prior to being licensed.  
  • After all current licensees complete the QE course, future CE courses will be used as a tool for keeping existing licensees up to date with new laws, rule additions and/or changes, and changes within the pet care or animal welfare industries.   

All courses will be delivered online through an eLearning system also known as a Learning Management System (LMS) Portal. 

  • When a new applicant submits the application to the CDA, PACFA’s Licensing and Education Unit (LEU) will review and process the application. 
  • LMS accounts may not be shared.
  • Once the application has been successfully processed the new applicant and/or licensee is enrolled in the QE course. An email will be sent providing a direct link to the LMS portal. 
  • We recommended that spam folders are checked regularly as any PACFA email may be diverted there when first received.
  • Current licensees will be emailed a link and enrollment information starting in 2022.
  • For any facilities that wish to enroll their employees in the courses, please submit a request to the PACFA office and the employee will receive an email to the LMS site.
  • Click here to fill out the request form.

Access to the PACFA LMS Portal and both the QE and CE courses will be free for all applicants/licensees and their staff members!

Yes! We encourage our licensed facilities and businesses to have their employees take our education courses as well. Employees are the front line and typically the face of your pet care business. Keeping your employees educated on the minimum standards requirements for the pet animals in their care will support your business to be in more compliance.

  • To get your employee(s) enrolled in PACFA courses, click here to fill out the request form.
  • Each employee will have their own individual account.
  • LMS accounts may NOT be shared. Accounts are set up per individual ONLY.
  • Please allow at least 2 weeks for the office to establish an account for your employee. Our licensees are our first priority, especially during renewal season.
  • Once your employee’s account has been established, an email will be sent to the email provided on the form with the LMS link. Have your employee check their spam folder as it may be sent there.
  • Your employee will then receive a separate email once they are enrolled in a course.

The QE course is required for brand new applicants.  

  • Licensees that need to submit a new application for a business address change or adding a license category will not have to take the QE course again.  For example if a groomer moves their grooming business to a new location, they will only be required to submit a new application and will NOT be required to take the QE course again.
  • If a facility’s licensee (also known as the Primary Business Contact) changes, this new applicant will need to take the QE course.
  • Change of ownership: If the new business owner does not currently own and have a PACFA license for another business/location, then the new business owner will be required to take the QE course.

Please contact the office or your assigned inspector with any questions.  As soon as your course completion is verified by the office, you will be emailed your inspector’s contact information and pre-license inspection information.

No. There will be quiz questions throughout each module to ensure you understand the content.

Yes!  All licensees are required to take either the QE or CE course to establish a baseline of knowledge to help achieve greater understanding with the program rules, stay current with PACFA rule changes, establish a minimum baseline of knowledge and best practices, enhance pet animal health, safety and welfare, and to protect consumers who use pet-care-related services.

Unfortunately, your pre-license inspection will not be scheduled and you will not get licensed. You will have 7 days, at your own pace, to complete all 4 modules. An email will be sent to you once you have completed your QE course and provide you instructions for next steps and your pre-license inspection.

Failure to take the CE course will result in possible disciplinary action.  We will send out announcements of when the course is available and will give you plenty of time to complete your CE course.

You will receive an email from the LMS site when you have completed your course.  The email will have your course completion certificate attached.  The email will provide you with instructions to email your course completion certificate to the PACFA office to verify your completion.  Once your course completion is verified you will receive an email from the office for the next steps in scheduling your pre-license inspection and contact information for your assigned inspector.

All licensees will be required to take the CE course so there can be a consistent base of knowledge for the PACFA rules and regulations, any changes with the rules and regulations, best practices, and common non-compliance issues to ensure overall better compliance. We will be creating CE courses that will be applicable to all types of facilities so it is relevant and useful for all facilities/businesses that are PACFA licensed. If you wish to be a part of the production of future CE courses, please look out for stakeholder meetings announcements for when the next meeting will be!

Yes! Please look out for an early access announcement sometime in 2022.

To obtain a PACFA license, you must first complete and submit the PACFA License Application with the required fee and all required documentation. Please read the application’s instructions carefully to ensure that you submit all required documents and accurately complete your application. 

  • Submitting a PACFA application DOES NOT automatically license your pet care business/facility. 
  • License Applications Fees are NON-REFUNDABLE.
  • Once the application is successfully processed, starting October 30, 2021 all new applicants will be required to complete the PACFA Qualifying Education (QE) course prior to a pre-license inspection.
    • If corrections to the application are required, an email will be sent to the email address on the application for further instructions.
    • Applicants have 30 days from the date of their application submission to provide required corrections, if needed. After 30 days, a denial letter will be sent and the application will no longer be valid. If the applicant wishes to apply again, a new application/fee will be required.
  • A pre-license inspection is REQUIRED prior to a license being issued. As soon as the PACFA office is able to confirm the completion of the QE course, a pre-license inspection will be scheduled with a PACFA Inspector. 
    • The pre-license inspection determines if your business is in compliance with the PACFA rules and regulations. 
    • It is very important to make sure you read the rules and regulations prior to this inspection. 
    • If any violations are found and corrections are required to be completed prior to your license being issued, your inspector will work with you to get them completed. 
    • A license application may be denied if the applicant or facility fails three (3) pre-license inspections.
  • Please review the PACFA Rules and Regulations to understand the requirements needed for a PACFA license.
  • All PACFA licenses expire March 1st of each year.
  • Renewal of a PACFA license is required prior to March 1st each year. 

New: Starting December 2023, you will be able to renew your license through the new PACFA Licensing Portal.  Visit the PACFA Licensing Portal box to access your account.

  • Shelters, Rescues, Breeders and/or Transporters are required to submit an annual statistics report with their renewal. Please click here to find the Statistic Reporting portal site.

The following situations apply to changes to a PACFA license:

  • All PACFA licenses are Non-Transferable. 
  • The following changes must be submitted as a new application/fee through the new PACFA Licensing Portal: 
    • Change of ownership
    • Change of Business physical address
    • Change of Business entity type
    • Addition or subtraction of license category/operation type.
    • Primary Business Contact/Licensee: 
    • IC Groomer location changes: 
      • IC Groomers are licensed at their home address. If IC Groomers home address changes, a new application/fee will need to be submitted within 15 days of moving.

PACFA QE & CE Contact Info

Inspection and Consumer Services—PACFA 
305 Interlocken Parkway 
Broomfield, CO 80021 


Licensing and Education Administrator: Becky Healy
Phone: (303) 869-9146
Fax: (720) 634-0934
Program Email: cda_pacfa@state.co.us