THERAPY DOG TRAINING
What is a Therapy Dog?
Therapy dogs are dogs who go with their owners to volunteer and provide pet therapy. They work in nursing homes, hospitals, psychiatric wards, shelters, schools and many other facilities. From working with a child who is learning to read to visiting a senior in assisted living, therapy dogs and their owners work together as a team to improve the lives of other people. These teams give unconditional love, boost self-esteem, and relieve loneliness and boredom. Did you know petting a dog will lower your blood pressure? The benefits are endless.
Pet therapists are in great demand, and there is a serious shortage of therapy dogs.
Therapy dogs are not service dogs.
Service dogs are dogs who are specially trained to perform specific tasks to help a person who has a disability. An example of a service dog is a dog who guides an owner who is blind, or a dog who assists someone who has a physical disability. Service dogs stay with their person and have special access privileges in public places such as on planes, restaurants, etc. Therapy dogs do not have the same special access as service dogs. It is unethical to attempt to pass off a therapy dog as a service dog for purposes such as flying on a plane or being admitted to a restaurant.
Sharing the love and affection of your dog improves the lives of others in so many more ways than we can begin to comprehend. Your visit will be the talk of the town for weeks to come! While we recommend your dog be off leash trained, therapy dogs must have sound on leash obedience including: Loose Leash Heel with an Auto Sit, Stay for a minimum of 2 minutes, Down, and Come.
Not there yet? No worries! From basic obedience to certification, we can help! Be you someone who just wants to volunteer their time or a social worker or clinician looking to add animal assisted therapy to their practice, lets get in touch!
Not every dog is born to be a Therapy Dog. Even though we may think it would be great to do with our dogs, it’s really up to them to show they enjoy this type of work. If we feel this is not the right training for you and your dog, we will let you know.