Dog Therapy Certification.

Therapy dog certification class is a one day, 3 hour class that is designed for dogs that already know basic obedience commands, have an outstanding temperament, and are friendly around people (young and older) as well as other dogs and animals. After going through this three hour certification class with Kelly, a (GCG) Canine Good Citizen Evaluator and Colleen, a (TDI) Therapy Dog International Evaluator we will finish the testing by going on a visit to one of our local retirement homes. Your dog may receive a certification if they pass all 13 items on the test and demonstrate readiness for therapy work. TDI Evaluators have extensive experience working with dogs and their owners, and are very knowledgeable about dog behavior. All Evaluators are Associate Members of TDI and have had visiting experience with their dog(s), so they know what is required for a dog to excel as a Therapy Dog. Click here to go to the TDI Website!

Therapy Dogs International accepts all breeds and sizes of dogs, including mixed-breed dogs, for certification. The most important characteristic of a therapy dog is its temperament. While many dogs provide love and companionship within their home environment, not all are qualified or have the temperament suited to be a therapy dog. Therapy dogs are particularly sensitive and attentive toward people outside, as well as inside their own home. They have a calm demeanor, gentle disposition, and exceptional friendliness to strangers. A therapy dog is a dog trained to provide affection and comfort to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, mental institutions, schools and in stressful situations such as disaster areas. These dogs must be confident, at ease in all situations, and gentle.

Therapy Dog Team

We welcome all owners and their therapy dogs to join us, whether or not they share our faith. Dogs do not discriminate and neither do we. All who have sweet, loving, gentle dogs are welcome! They must be good with children as well as the elderly, have good manners, know their basic obedience commands and love to be petted. All dogs must go through Therapy Certification. Check Calendar for next certification date.

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A therapy dog's primary job is to allow unfamiliar people to make physical contact with it and to enjoy that contact. He must enjoy human contact and be content to be petted and handled, sometimes clumsily. Children in particular enjoy hugging animals while adults usually enjoy simply petting the dog. The dog might need to be lifted onto an invalid's lap or bed and sit or lie comfortably there. Many dogs contribute to the visiting experience by performing small tricks for their audiences or by playing carefully structured games.

If you have an interest in this kind of work and have a dog well suited for therapy, consider getting your dog certified so you can take advantage of this special way of touching other people's lives. Therapy dogs and their handlers bring joy, comfort and peace to others, and provide needy people with someone to hug and talk to. Call us to learn more about therapy dog training.

Please note that a therapy dog does not have the same rights as a service dog. It will not give your dog access into public places.