Future Therapy Dogs
Where “your puppy dreams come true”.
Your Texas USA Australian Labradoodle is the perfect candidate to become a therapy dog. They are good-natured, gentle, funny, patient and love to please. Their non-shedding coat will not trigger a person’s allergies; therefore you have a perfect recipe for success!
By definition, a therapy dog is an animal that has been specially trained to provide comfort to people in various situations such as hospitals, schools reading programs- (more about this later)*; assisted living, nursing homes and even in disaster relief.
Our dogs have a natural ability to connect with humans and come from extensive therapy dog lines. They come in all sizes therefore making it possible to sit on someone’s lap, chair, bed or simply lay their head on a patient’s knee or bed.
A therapy dog must be happy, friendly, confident and willing to accept strangers, other dogs, and all kinds of handling whether deliberate or accidental. They must become familiar and comfortable with various pieces of equipment and apparatus commonly found in hospital situations. Also involved are many scents, both normal, and not so normal. They must be accepting of situations in which there may be chaos and loud noises; they must remain calm in all situations and be completely under control by their handler.
People who meet and spend time with a therapy dog come away from the experience happier and more relaxed than before. The handler comes away with a sense of joy having helped someone less fortunate.
There are two major organizations which certify a dog for therapy work;
Therapy Dogs International and Delta Pet Partners.
*Reading Programs*: In addition to TDI and Delta Pet Partners, there are many local, independent therapy dog organizations and there may be one in your area. Some organizations specialize in reading programs at local libraries or schools where children with reading difficulties read to the dogs! The dog does not judge the child, does not laugh if they stumble with their reading. Additionally there are programs that deal with children or adults with Autism. Studies have found therapy dogs often successfully help these people make eye contact and interact with the dog. It’s a very heartwarming experience for everyone involved.
Do not confuse a Therapy Dog with a Service Dog, as they are very different. A Therapy Dog must be certified and is commonly not allowed access to many establishments, etc. unless on official business. A Service Dog is allowed anywhere, without certification, according to the ADA (Americans With Disabilities Act). This Federal law supersedes all local and state laws and is often abused by pet owners who simply want their pets to accompany them everywhere. There is also a lack of knowledge by businesses, etc. who think they may refuse access by a service animal, to their establishment. By definition, a service animal is one who is individually trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability. By law, a business may only ask “what service does this animal perform?”
Requests for Therapy Puppies/Dogs are growing!
As a complement to our Texas USA Therapy Dog Program, in the near future we will be offering the services of a fully accredited Therapy and Assistance Dog trainer. She will be able to offer additional services for training dogs beyond the level of the training we provide.
It’s rewarding to see the positive impact these incredible dogs have on their human families.
We invite you to read a story written by Rhonda Renner. “My Journey to Lawson”
|We are proud to be associated with Rhonda and Marty Renner and their daughter Ashton Russ. They will be our assistants in training Texas USA Therapy Dogs. Please visit their links to find out more about these incredible people and their connection with dogs and people.|