Therapy Dogs, Training Your Dog to
Reach Others, 2nd Edition gives you
all the information you need to
select, socialize and train your dog
for this work. What better creature
than a dog to offer comfort,
companionship and entertainment
to people in a wide variety of
ALL ABOUT DOGS and CATS Resource Center for Canine & Feline Lovers
|AKC Canine Good Citizen Test
The AKC's Canine Good Citizen®
(CGC) Program Sponsored by K9
Started in 1989, CGC is a certification
program that is designed to reward
dogs who have good manners at
home and in the community. The
Canine Good Citizen Program is a
two-part program that stresses
responsible pet ownership for owners
and basic good manners for dogs. All
dogs who pass the 10-step CGC test
may receive a certificate from the
American Kennel Club.
Many other countries (including
England, Australia, Japan, Hungary,
Denmark, Sweden, Canada, and
Finland) have developed CGC
programs based on the AKC's CGC
AKC's Good Citizen Test
All dogs are special to the people they own. However, there are some dogs who are
trained to fulfill functions which put them in a "special' category.
Assistance Dogs not only provide a specific service to their handlers, but also greatly
enhance their lives with a new sense of freedom and independence.
The three types of Assistance Dogs are
GUIDE DOGS for the blind and the visually impaired
HEARING DOGS for the deaf and hard of hearing
SERVICE DOGS for people with disabilities other than those related to vision or hearing
Guide Dogs assist blind and visually impaired people by avoiding obstacles, stopping at
curbs and steps, and negotiating traffic. The harness and U-shaped handle fosters
communication between the dog and the blind partner. The human's role is to provide
directional commands, while the dog's role is to insure the team's safety even if this
requires disobeying an unsafe command.
Labrador and Golden Retrievers and German Shepherd dogs as well as other large
breeds are carefully bred, socialized and raised for over one year by volunteers, then
trained for 4 to 6 months by professional trainers before being placed with their blind
Hearing Dogs assist deaf and hard of hearing individuals by alerting them to a variety
of household sounds such as a door knock or doorbell, alarm clock, oven buzzer,
telephone, baby cry, name call or smoke alarm. The dogs are trained to make physical
contact and lead their deaf partners to the source of the sound.
Hearing Dogs are generally mixed breeds acquired from animal shelters and are small
to medium in size. Prior to formal audio response training, the younger adoptees are
raised and socialized by volunteer puppy raisers. Hearing Dogs are identified by an
orange collar and leash and/or vest.
Service Dogs assist physically disabled people by retrieving objects that are out of
their reach, pulling wheelchairs, opening and closing doors, turning light switches off
and on, barking for alert, finding another person, assisting ambulatory persons to walk
by providing balance and counterbalance and many other individual tasks as needed
by a disabled person.
Service Dogs are either rescued from animal shelters or bred in selective breeding
programs and raised by volunteers prior to their formal training. Most Service Dogs are
Golden Retrievers or Labrador Retrievers. Service Dogs can be identified by either a
backpack or harness.
Therapy Dog refers to a dog trained to provide affection and comfort to people in
hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, mental institutions, schools, and stressful
situations such as disaster areas.
Therapy dogs come in all sizes and breeds. The most important characteristic of a
therapy dog is temperament. A good therapy dog must be friendly, patient, confident,
at ease in all situations, and gentle. Therapy dogs must enjoy human contact and be
content to be petted and handled, sometimes clumsily.
Therapy dogs are not assistance dogs. Therapy dogs do not provide direct assistance,
do not have legal rights to travel everywhere, and must be invited by institutions. Most
institutions have rigorous requirements for therapy dogs. Many organizations provide
testing and accreditation for therapy dogs, and require that a dog pass the equivalent
of the American Kennel Club's Canine Good Citizen test, and then add further
requirements specific to the environments in which the dogs will be working.
"Visiting Pets" "Therapy Dogs" "Therapy Pets" are some of the names given to
describe programs in which animals help people just by visiting with them.
For more information on Therapy Dogs and how to qualify your pet , please visit:
Therapy Dogs International,Inc
Search and Rescue Dogs
These dogs are trained as search and rescue workers in cases of lost persons and
Search dogs locate people who are missing or lost: such as people lost in the
wilderness, people who walk away from nursing homes, are covered in snow
avalanches, buried under collapsed buildings, etc.
Rescue dogs assist people who are in difficult situations, such as in the water after a
Cadaver Dogs or Human Remains Detection Dogs use their scenting ability to
discover bodies or human remains at the scenes of disasters, crimes oraccidents.
Search and Rescue dogs were used in the aftermath of the 9-11 attacks in New York,
searching the rubble pile for survivors and dead bodies.
Detection Dogs must have superior smelling abilities. They help to detect termites in
homes, illegal substances in luggage, bombs, chemicals, and many other
substances.Tracking Dogs help find lost people and animals or track down possible
Friendly and informative, this guide
looks at the breeding, raising,
training, and assessment of young
guide dogs, as well as what happens
when they are matched with their
handlers to become working guide
dogs. It explains how guide dogs
are trained to make life easier for
people who are blind or who can't
see well enough to get about safely.
Also described is the history of dogs
that were trained to guide blind
people from as far back as the early
For Grade 4-6- Children also will
meet several guide dogs in action
and learn the stories of special dog
and owner relationships.