How to Train a Therapy Dog? | 10 Tests for Therapy Dog Training

Therapy dogs are known for the feelings of rehabilitation and well-being when they interact with people. Playing with the dogs provides calmness and relaxation by elevating the levels of serotonin and dopamine. The dogs have a non-judgmental presence, so they can help people in a scared and stressed environment like hospitals, nursing facilities, schools, and rehab centers. The dogs can return to help the people just by behaving normally and wagging their tails.


If you are looking to share the love with the dogs, don’t overthink as there are no age or breed requirements. You just need a positive temperament puppy with good health. Most of the dogs love to have a job. May your dog job will be hiking alongside something else. But make sure to don’t give your dog a job that it’s doesn’t like.


Consider a good candidate

Your dog should be perfect for a good therapy animal. A good therapy dog is always friendly and always keeps quiet and calm in a variety of environments. They usually enjoy it when they are touched by strangers, especially when they are touched by the children. These dogs know to take the treats nicely. All dogs of any size, mutts, or purebreds can make the perfect therapy animals. Although the size plays a little role in some places like the small dogs are good for snuggling in the hospital bed or on a lap, while the larger dogs are good for encouraging the people to through a ball for them. The two main categories of therapy dogs include the following.


Animal-assisted therapy

It uses companion animals for the therapy of the patients. The health care professional recommended the interaction to improve the physical and emotional function of the patient. For example, the tossing of a ball or brushing the dog’s coat encourages repetitive hand-eye coordination exercises.


Animal-assisted activities

Animal-assisted activities encourage people to communicate. Many people feel better and relaxed in the presence of animals without any special professional trainer or formal treatment plan.

But neither of these dogs are considered as service animals by federal law. Service dogs are usually for helping disabled people.


Practice the Tests for therapy dog training

Usually, the older dogs are the best therapy animals, but make sure to train your puppy early to make them a perfect therapy dog. According to the American Kennel Club, 10 tests within their program covers all the basic behavior training.

1. The first one accepts a friendly stranger, which tests whether the dog accepts the friendly stranger.

2. The second test is about petting. You need to check your dog sit politely and allow the stranger to pet.

3.The next thing is about the appearance and grooming of the dog. In this test dog allow the strangers to check its feet and ears like the veterinarian.

4. The next test is about dog walking. They should be walking on a loose leash with their owners.

5.The next test is the dog’s walking through the crowd. Check if the dog can handle walking through the crowd with his owner without reacting negatively.

6. The dog should be responding to the basic behavioral commands.

7. The dog should be responding to the recall commands.

8. The dog should be responding properly when another dog owner is approaching the dog.

9. Check how perfectly the dog can react to the distractions.

10.The next test is about dog separation. Check how much time the dog can handle away from its owners.

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