Dogs who are trained through The Dog Project are subjected to rigorous training and testing. These dogs are known as Facility Dogs, or more commonly, Therapy Dogs. Facility dogs are expertly trained dogs who partner with a facilitator working in a health care, visitation or education setting, and are registered AND certified .
The Dog Project facility dogs are trustworthy in professional environments and can perform over 40 commands designed to motivate and inspire clients with special needs.
Facilitators are working professionals or volunteers responsible for handling and caring for the facility dog. Additionally, facilitators are committed to long-term employment or volunteering where they directly serve clients with special needs a minimum of twenty hours per week.
One of the most valued qualities of the facility dog is the unconditional love and attention it gives to the clients and patients with whom it interacts.
In an educational setting, a facility dog helps engage students in schools and special education classes.
In a health care environment, activities such as grooming, feeding and playing fetch with a facility dog can aid patients in medical rehabilitation and psychiatric programs.
A well-mannered and highly trained facility dog encourages feelings of calm and security for clients in a visitation setting such as a courtroom.
In order to be eligible for a facility dog, applicants must:
Be employed working a minimum of 20 hours a week, or be willing to volunteer hours as required by the facility they are placed with
Have approval from their employer for the use of a facility dog
Be able to demonstrate the ability to safely and effectively control, manage and care for a dog
Have adequate vision to observe, intervene, and manage a dog’s behavior (generally equivalent to DMV license requirements)
Be willing to attend a six-week Team Training class at a Pawsible Angels training center
Be able to pass the certification test and complete the required registration
Be willing to participate in on-going Pawsible Angels training and graduate support program