This page explains our process for certifying you and your dog as a Therapy Dogs of Vermont therapy dog team and has all of the required online forms.

Passing the test and the evaluation process is necessary in order to become a therapy dog team with Therapy Dogs of Vermont. Tests are offered throughout the year, in some counties on a monthly basis. Once certification is achieved, a team can make therapy dog visits to facilities in their community (as volunteers). Certification provides many benefits, including the support of an established, experienced, highly regarded local organization, and the legitimacy and community connections that comes with it (click here for additional benefits). Certification remains current for as long as the team member renews their annual membership.

The entire process of TDV certification involves three basic steps (please note that your tester and/or evaluator may also provide you with additional instructions for each phase of the certification).

Certification Process

  1. ONLINE APPLICATION. Completing the online application below and submitting the testing fee ($45)
  2. TEST PREP. Preparing for your test by reviewing all policies, test expectations, etc. in the Certification Packet
  3. EVALUATION VISITS. Evaluations are in a nursing facility, and they consist of three to five visits with an evaluator in your area. Your evaluator will communicate any additional information needed for the evaluation and/or directions to the evaluation location by email in advance of your first evaluation.


  1. $45 paid at time of registration (*see our refund policy below); AND
  2. $35 due for first-year TDV membership after successful completion of all certification requirements.

These fees cover up to two handlers in the same household and ONE dog. Contact TDV for fees for more than two household handlers.

Policies related to the testing fee

*Please note our TDV policy regarding test fee refunds:

  • If you cancel your appointment less than 48 hours prior to your test, do not appear at your test, or fail the test; your fee will NOT be refunded. If you still wish to be certified, you would need re-apply and pay the testing fee again.
  • If you choose not to be certified and want to withdraw your application, the fee is not refundable. (Please be sure that you understand the requirements for certification before you apply!) If you have any questions about the process, how long it takes, and where you must travel to be tested and evaluated, e-mail us!).
  • If you cancel your test three times, TDV reserves the right to cancel your application (and the test fee will be retained by TDV)
  • Applications will automatically expire within SIX MONTHS of your application date and your fee will not be refunded. You may re-apply.

Online Application

Here you will find all of the forms required to apply for certification, as well as a link to PayPal for your $45 testing fee. A few important notes before you begin the forms:

  • Review the Certification Packet to understand all policies, expectations, and more.
  • After you complete the form and payment, you will receive an auto-reply message from our system that your application was successfully submitted. Then, you will receive an email from us (this may take a few days) confirming that we can accommodate your chosen test date, along with directions to the location and any additional instructions. Please check your spam and junk mail folders for our email.

  • Applications are accepted up until the Thursday evening before the upcoming test.
  • You will need to have a digital copy of your dog’s proof of rabies handy to upload.