We work with therapy dogs at our facility in Northern Virginia on a daily basis. Certain dogs have nice characteristics and certain behaviors that creates the perfect well-balanced friendly dog for individuals. In fact, because of this specific disposition, trainers can easily measure or choose the most appropriate coaching system/method. We can decide which profession the dog would be best suited for, such as medical care dogs, search and rescue (SAR) dogs, detection dogs, or therapy dogs.
Just like with people, there is almost a certification procedure for every profession.
How to Certify a Therapy Dog.
There are many different organizations across the country that do testing, however they remarkably have the similar common practice procedures including:
1. Before anyone will register the pet into a therapy dog program, the primary factor to try and do is to get the registration paperwork which is generally found on the specific organization’s web site. Some of the most well known organizations are: Angel on a Leash, Pet Partners, American Kennel Club (AKC), Delta Society, and Therapy Dog International.
2. If the dog meets the prerequisites, the organization can put the pet in special training or coaching programs; some organizations even provide on-line coaching for this. Alternative certification organizations don’t provide therapy dog training in the least, however they’re going to take your dog to the AKC Canine Good Citizen level, which is the first step to becoming a Therapy Dog in Northern Virginia.
3. The dog owner should take the dog for his/her normal medical examination. The dog should be fully healthy to continue the certification procedure. In most cases, these major corporations force the dog to show regular proof of DHLPP, rabies, and bortatella vaccinations.
4. Subsequent vital step in virtually any therapy dog registration procedure is dog analysis. The dog’s behaviors are evaluated by a representative of the organization. The analysis is fairly straightforward, the dog should have the basic manners, for examples sit, come, stay, down, and so on. A therapy dog should stay calm among strangers and alternative dogs; any indication of aggression isn’t allowed.
5. Fill out the registration paperwork; before submitting it to the organization, enclose the health and analysis certifications. It’s vital to incorporate an image of the dog for identification purpose. Please keep in mind that certification for Therapy dogs is not free; the owner should pay the registration fee once submitting the work (generally around $45.00/year).
6. Finally, you just have to wait for approval; once the certificate is issued, the pet is formally a therapy dog. An authorized therapy dog is a well-trained animal which will offer comfort to aged people, kids with learning disabilities, hospitalized individuals, and more. The animal are allowed to go to varied public facilities like libraries, hospitals, nursing homes, schools, and essentially each establishment wherever the help from a therapy dog is wanted.
If you are wanting a dog to do therapy work, I would recommend our Therapy Dog Development Course which gives you and your dog all of the tools and skills needed to pass the TDI Certification!
Additionally, I would highly recommend reading my blog on “Picking the Perfect Dog” to ensure you get the “right” type of dog for this work.