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Category: Dog Training Courses Online | Author: admin 11.04.2014
Animals, particularly dogs, and humans have experienced a special relationship since the beginning of recorded history.
It appears that we, humans, are the ones who actually derive much more from these relationships than the dogs do. Therapy dogs are specially trained to offer companionship, affection, and comfort to individuals in need. Serving in hospitals, schools, nursing homes, homeless shelters, mental facilities, prisons, schools, disaster areas, and other sites, the dogs provide a connection, closeness, friendly face, non-judgmental presence, and a friendly, cold nose to nuzzle. Often, the children who are chosen to participate in therapy reading programs are those who have difficulties reading and are thus lacking confidence in their abilities. In a splendid association, HOPE Animal Assisted Crisis Response and the American Humane Association joined together in a mutual effort to work with the National Military Family Association to bring animal assisted therapy to military children through a program called Operation Purple. The time spent with these specifically trained therapy dogs and their teams provides a morale boost to campers and allows them to work through stress and unsettling times in a positive and productive way. A service animal is an animal (usually a dog, but sometimes a miniature horse or other animal) that has been individually trained to perform tasks and do work for an individual with disabilities.

In another example, dogs have been trained to detect when someone with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is experiencing a flashback to a traumatic situation. The training for a service animal represents considerable work, as the animal must be trained to be good natured and obedient in a variety of situations, while also protective of its owner.
Perhaps most importantly, the dogs in both categories have one crucial fact in common: their innate ability to offer unconditional and unlimited love to all they encounter. Our Pet Assisted Therapy teams are made up of local residents who work in pairs, with their pets, to visit healthcare facilities, drug rehab centers and correctional facilities.
A wide range of breeds can be used as therapy dogs, as long as the dog is calm, friendly, has a stable temperament, and is responsive to training. If the dogs are small enough ( with permission) people can hold them in their laps or the dogs can be carefully placed on a bed or other safe location. Hospitals may certify their own therapy dog squadron or make arrangements with a mental health agency or a therapy dog group.
If you see someone with a service animal, always ask for permission before petting or handling it, and be aware that if the animal is working, you may not be allowed to touch it.

Please check out our most recent media coverage in the Half Moon Bay Patch, Pets Around the Bay segment, articles in Sports Illustrated, Parade Magazine and CBS News. Some dogs will do simple tricks or obedience routines to entertain and help people take their minds off their problems. To become certified and actively participate, therapy dogs must usually meet the standards set by one of the many organizations that exist. An ideal therapy handler prioritizes the safety and health of their pet, is reliable, and enjoys interacting with new people.

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