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Old 02-06-2013, 09:48 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Theraphy Dog Training in Ontario???

Hey there everyone,
I'm looking for information on training my shih-poo in volunteering in Therapy in hospitals/nursing homes etc and was wondering if anyone can direct me in the right way. We are a little "older" in training (Emma is 7 months however she does already know her basic commands (sit,stay,come, and can retrieve things) I also am working on socialization her too. What I am looking for is any extra "training" or suggestions as to what might help us in getting her certified as a "therapy" dog! would appreciate advice
Dannielle & Emma
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Old 02-06-2013, 10:03 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I would go to Delta Society... They have a pet partner program
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Old 02-06-2013, 10:31 AM   #3 (permalink)
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where do i find that?
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Old 02-06-2013, 11:37 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Theraphy Dog Training in Ontario???

I think that's just in USA though isn't it?


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Old 02-06-2013, 12:31 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Hi It is through the St. John ambulance in Ontario. I know in London there is a dog training facility that evaluates your dog as to whether it has the proper temperament. But I am sure if you contact St. John they will help you out with the process. Here is a linkTherapy Dog Services
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Old 02-06-2013, 12:42 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Hi I am 'aware' of the st johns thing but she has to be a year old before they will even look at her. what i was looking for was maybe some classes prior to going to them. But thanks for the info!
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Old 02-06-2013, 02:21 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Hmmm... I did not know about the one year stipulation. I googled and found a place that trains for therapy....but they must be a year. I think Trillium (of this forum) has gotten her therapy dog licence for Betty Jo...maybe she can help, as she is in OntarioTherapy Dog Training - Delightful Dogs. Here is the place I found but they must be a year old.
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Old 02-10-2013, 05:21 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Sorry didn't know they were just in the US. The reason that the pup cannot be certified until a year of age, is that they are not fully grown... It is a regulation to protect your pup... Also, puppy teeth can hurt!
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:15 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Both of my Rottweilers were therapy dogs and I used to be an assistant evaluator for St. John Ambulance Therapy Dogs. While basic obedience is definitely needed, the certification evaluation tests more for correct temperament than anything.

I would work on socializing the heck out of your dog, to all ages, sexes, shapes, colors and sizes of people. She needs to be comfortable around all types of equipment you'd find in a hospital or nursing home setting, like wheel chairs, canes, walkers, etc. She should be able to take a bit of rough handling, anywhere on her body, without reacting negatively.....not everyone you visit will have the physical or mental capacity to pat her gently. She will need to be able to withstand loud noises and large groups of people all trying to pat her at once.

As you can see, some of the above you can train for but some of it depends on your dog's temperament. I haven't been with the organization for a few years now, but when I was, if your dog didn't make it through the evaluation the first time, you are were able to go back and retest a year later. The only exception was if your dog failed because of aggression towards a person or another dog, you were not allowed to retest.

You can't test before a year of age because they want to make sure the dog's temperament isn't going to change. With puppies going through fear stages, etc, it makes it hard to judge but by a year, a dog's basic temperament is usually apparent.

Hopefully this info is of some help.

Last edited by caroline429; 02-10-2013 at 08:21 PM. Reason: adding some more info
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Old 02-11-2013, 02:39 AM   #10 (permalink)
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If you live near Ottawa "Best Friend Dog Training" Best Friends Dog Training Therapy Dog School provide a therapy dog school course. You cannot get the certification out of it but they help you evaluate if your dog would be a happy therapy dog and prepare him for the St-John Ambulance evaluation. It's an excellent school, I am taking the Beginner Obedience course and I will be taking the therapy dog school course next.
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