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I have been doing animal-assisted therapy and activities with my dogs for the past 10 years. When I started, my dogs were registered with Delta Society’s Pet Partners Program . A few years later, we switched registration to Therapy Dogs, Inc . (TDInc.). Founded in 1990, TDInc. is an organization with more than 12,000 members in the United States and its territories, as well as Canada.
I appreciate Dr. McConnell telling it like it is—that this work is not for every dog, nor every dog-owner. However, I was dismayed that she (and you) neglected to include mention of TDInc. in your piece. Our organization does not put a lot of money into marketing, so perhaps it is easy to miss us.
The value of registering a therapy dog can’t be stressed enough: proof that the dog is suitable for the work, training for the handler regarding his/ her responsibilities when visiting and liability insurance in case something unexpected happens. However, I hope that your readers will consider all three of the national organizations as they prepare to visit with their dog.
In response to McConnell’s “Lending a Helping Paw ”.