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Teddy and Dakota's Mommy
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Dakota is going to be screened to see if she has the proper temperment to be accepted into a therapy dog training program and I was just wondering if anyone has gone through a similar program. I'm just wondering what the screening program entails. He mentioned a few things but not everything. He did say it doesn't have to do with obedience as the obedience comes after the screening portion.
Thanks
 

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Tess and Liza
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Tess got her Therapy dog certificate in April, through Delta. We did not have to go through a screening before we took the classes. She did have her CGC before we started, maybe that made a difference?
 

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Tracer, Rumor & Cady
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For TDI (Therapy Dogs International)- going to classes is NOT REQUIRED. If you dog can perform the tasks required in the test...and is calm, polite and willing to get lots of loving without being overwhelmed... Then you can sign up at any test under a TDI evaluator and be tested...

A training facility certainly can have classes that are dedicated to teaching the skill set that a therapy dog will need....and they can pick and choose who they allow into the classes....but for TDI, formal classes/formal training are not required.

I would hate to see a dog/handler team taken advantage of and being convinced that you have to have this set of classes in order to volunteer...
 

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Remy most certainly was tempermant tested (as was I) - basically they approach both the owner/handler and the dog in different ways to see how the dog will react. some examples are:
in a threatening manner with arms above their head walking stiff legged sort of like a robot
with their arms out straight for the dog like they are going to hug the dog
straight for me in a threatening manner
straight for me ignoring the dog
had a child come to Remy and ooh and ah all over him tug on his ears and eventually climb all over him
etc etc etc
He's a golden he passed with flying colors. In the first two examples he stood there with his tail wagging all happy to see them, in the third he sat down and just watched, and the minute he saw a child he went down on his belly and let the child do whatever it wanted to him and kept pushing his toys to let hte child play with them.

Basically they are making sure they don't spook, or growl or behave negatively to some things they might encounter while doing therapy work - that's all.

Good luck - I know this is truly Remy's calling he absolutely LOVES visitng people in the hospital, children most especially - despite his size, he is so gentle and so loving, it's really amazing.
 

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Duh I just saw you are on Long Island - are you going through the Good Dog Foundation ("GDF")? If so - so did I. They have their own process - so questions you ask here, may or may not apply to them.

Remy was tempermant tested and then placed out of having to take their obedience class - however we do still have to take their medical equipment class. This is true despite the fact that we already volunteer in several institutions where GDF is present as well. That is because their insurance requires it before they will provide coverage. To be honest I like the fact that we are covered under a policy, then again I am an insurance nut.

Regardless where you are volunteering it is still wonderful - and you will both love it!
 

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Dakota is going to be screened to see if she has the proper temperment to be accepted into a therapy dog training program and I was just wondering if anyone has gone through a similar program. I'm just wondering what the screening program entails. He mentioned a few things but not everything. He did say it doesn't have to do with obedience as the obedience comes after the screening portion.
Thanks
What group do you plan on joining? Different groups have different evaluations. Some are harder than others in terms of passing the test.
 

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For TDI (Therapy Dogs International)- going to classes is NOT REQUIRED. If you dog can perform the tasks required in the test...and is calm, polite and willing to get lots of loving without being overwhelmed... Then you can sign up at any test under a TDI evaluator and be tested...

A training facility certainly can have classes that are dedicated to teaching the skill set that a therapy dog will need....and they can pick and choose who they allow into the classes....but for TDI, formal classes/formal training are not required.

I would hate to see a dog/handler team taken advantage of and being convinced that you have to have this set of classes in order to volunteer...
We also went through TDI and therefore no pre-screening, but perhaps each organization has their own procedures. Our obedience instructor helped us to prepare for the test as well as we did A LOT of practicing on our own. The TDI evaluator asked us to do certain things during the test that evaluated Brady's temperment as well as his obedience, so it was all inclusive. I think goldens generally have no problem in this arena if you can control their exuberance.:)
 

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Every therapy group has it's own requirements.
And Goldens are not as prevelant in groups as folks think because they don't all pass assessment tests - most often cited reason is they tend to jump up on folks and be mouthy - it can just be a function of the training some of the dogs had and everyone thinks their golden can do therapy work which is not true.

I've been doing Animal Therapy and Animal Assisted Therapy with my Golden for almost 2 years now (he just turned 4). I belong to two different groups and both required Delta Society Registration. Groups in my area prefer Delta because it requires recertification every two years and TDI doesn't.
Plus the the local groups in my area feel that TDI doesn't go far enough beyond a CGC for certification. Please do not shoot the messenger on this :))

The local humane society that has 3 different programs requires that your dog have a temperment test that they administer that takes about 20 minutes. With their temperment testing and some training you can visit with their pet-a-pet program with local nursing homes and rehab centers. All other programs require Delta and additional training by the hospital that you work with because it is Animal Assisted Therapy and requires setting goals with the medical team and child undergoing physical therapy. The READ program requires additional certification and training because it is also Animal Assisted Therapy. Any program with a hospital usually requires additional training.
 

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And Goldens are not as prevelant in groups as folks think because they don't all pass assessment tests - most often cited reason is they tend to jump up on folks
Yup, this was Brady's biggest challenge. That's what I meant when I referred to controlling their exuberance. But we overcame with lots of practice.
 

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Groups in my area prefer Delta because it requires recertification every two years and TDI doesn't
Just an FYI from TDI's latest newsletter: The organization does not require re-certification every 2 years (yet), but the facilities at which we visit can request that the dogs be re-tested every 2 yrs, and apparently that is starting to become a more common request.
 

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We also went through TDI and therefore no pre-screening, but perhaps each organization has their own procedures. Our obedience instructor helped us to prepare for the test as well as we did A LOT of practicing on our own. The TDI evaluator asked us to do certain things during the test that evaluated Brady's temperment as well as his obedience, so it was all inclusive. I think goldens generally have no problem in this arena if you can control their exuberance.:)
Many Goldens have problems with the "Leave It" Command.
I think that the TDI test is posted on their website.
 

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Many Goldens have problems with the "Leave It" Command.
From my observations in obedience classes, many dogs in general, not just goldens, struggle with leave it.
 

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Tracer, Rumor & Cady
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I agree that TDInt'l doesnt go far enough...wish they went further.
I like the way TDInc. has someone shadow you for a period of time.
 

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Teddy and Dakota's Mommy
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Discussion Starter #16
This is through a local group that does assisted animal therapy. I've been in contact with TDI also but this group supplies the obedience training if they pass the screening test which is just temperment testing. It definitely sounds like every place is different.
 
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