We use several criteria to determine if a dog will make a great therapy dog. Candidates for therapy dog work undergo a testing session and three-to-five evaluations in a healthcare facility with a TDV tester/evaluator. Read below to help answer the question, “Is my dog a good candidate to work as a therapy dog?”
- Your dog must be at least one year of age.
- Your dog must NOT be on a raw meat diet. Click here to an article by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
- Your dog must be healthy and current on its rabies vaccination.
- The dog must have been owned by, and living with, the handler for at least 6 months (i.e., if a dog has been adopted).
- Handler(s) must be at least 14 years of age.
Please be sure you read, understand, and are in agreement with TDV therapy dog team policies and requirements before you apply. These policies and requirements are in the Certification Packet.
What’s the next step: Prep Clinic or Certification Testing/Evaluation?
Enroll in a Prep Clinic if you:
- Think your dog might meet the requirements, but you aren’t quite sure and would like an opportunity to learn more about what it takes to be a great therapy dog team
- Would like an opportunity to practice the certification test with your dog and gain some new skills to help you be a great therapy dog team.
- Haven’t had your dog for the required 6 months but want to prepare.
- Have a dog that is not a year of age yet and you want to get started (dogs should be at least 6 mo. old for the clinic).
If you are confident your dog easily meets the requirements and exhibits the positive behaviors of a good candidate, then register for a test. Clinic attendance is not required before testing.