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Therapy Dogs Laws and Requirements- Laws
A therapy dog is a pet trained to interact with many people other than its handler to make those people feel better. Therapy dogs are also trained to behave safely around all sorts of people, and are often certified.
A therapy dog handler is not given public access rights by any service dog laws to take the dog out everywhere like service dog users, because the handler does not have a disability the dog is individually trained to mitigate. Therapy dogs are only allowed into places like hospitals, skilled nursing facilities, and libraries by prior agreement (again, not by service dog laws).
Therapy Dogs Laws and Requirements- Requirements
Therapy Dogs must:
- Be well-tempered
- Enjoy human touch
- Comfortable in busy or stressful settings
- Not shed excessively
- Love to cheer others up!
Therapy Dogs Laws and Requirements- Final Thoughts
A good therapy dog must be friendly, confident, gentle in all situations and must be comfortable and contented with being petted and handled, sometimes clumsily. Therapy dogs must have a calm and stable temperament and must be able to tolerate children, other animals, crowded public places and other situations which may be stressful, without becoming distressed or dangerous. Additionally, some institutions require that any therapy dogs working on their premises be fully insured and trained, and sometimes that they be certified by an accredited organization.
There are many different organizations which offer therapy dog certification and/or registration, and each organization has its own standards and protocols. However, all organizations that deal with therapy dog certification typically share common ground in their training and temperament requirements for any therapy dog candidates. Additionally, some medical institutions require therapy dogs to be registered or certified by an official organization, prior to allowing the dog-handler-team to operate on their premises.