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5 Essential Therapy Dog Requirements

A therapy dog has special duties; the animal is trained specially by certain organizations or training teams so that it is able to serve the society in the intended manner. Commonly, such dog visits nursing homes, hospitals, schools for children with learning disabilities, and other health-related institutions. Some people believe that the positive interactions created between human and animal may improve or quicken the healing process.

a therapy dog with children

Image from latimesblogs.latimes.com

Nonetheless, not all dogs are qualified for the jobs; there are some specific requirements to meet to apply for the profession. Some of the most essential therapy dog requirements commonly used by any training organization are listed below.

1. Age

Basically, there are two important aspects concerning age. First, the dog has to be at least 1 year old to be allowed to apply for the training. Second, the dog has lived for at least 1 year with the owner. It is also necessary that the animal does not indicate any aggressive behavior under many different situations.

2. Breed

In many cases, any dog breed can be trained to become a therapy dog including mixed breeds and pure breeds. It is believed that each breed has special properties, attitudes, and behaviors that are useful for human, for example for healing or health purposes. Some of the best breeds for therapy dog are Saint Bernard, Pomeranian, Greyhounds, Bullmastiff, Airedale Terrier, Labrador Retrievers, and more. Please put in mind that the mentioned breeds are merely examples; there are many more breeds that can also be such great candidates for therapy dogs.