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How to Become a Therapy Dog February 14, 2009

Posted by hollythenewfcom in Therapy Dog Work.
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Holly The Newf and the Tail Waggin Tutors Program

Holly The Newf and the Tail Waggin Tutors Program

I recently received an email from my new friend Roosevelt, a Newfoundland in TN.  He is interested in becoming a therapy dog and was wondering how to get started. I am a therapy dog registered through Therapy Dogs International (TDI). On the TDI Getting Started Page is information on the registration requirements, upcoming tests, and the testing requirements.  I had to take the TDI test which included a temperment evaluation, an evaluation of my behavior around people and other dogs, and the American Kennel Club’s Canine Good Citizen Test (CGC).  Each year you must renew your certification by filling out a health form and sending in a check for $30.  My human Kim and I can visit nursing homes, hospitals, and shelters. We developed several programs to tell adults and kids All About Newfoundlands and about responsible Dog Ownership .  One of my favorite programs is the Tail Waggin Tutors where children who are having difficulty learning to read use me as practice and they read out loud to me. There are other therapy dog programs in the United States including the Delta Society, and Angel on a Leash. I have a whole page on my web site devoted to information and resources on therapy dogs. I am always amazed how excited people are to meet me, pet me, and ask questions about me. Being a therapy dog is a great experience and is very worthwhile.