In everyday conversations the terms are often interchangeable but there are some differences.
Most national organizations register their teams but do not certify them.
A registered team may or may not have gone through training with a specific organization. The registration of the team in most cases means that the team signed up, paid a testing fee along with submitting an application, and went for an evaluation. If they passed their evaluation (test) with a set minimum score they then were eligible to be registered with that organization.
When a team is *certified* that implies that the organization requires certain training (classes through them) over a recognized length of time, normally has additional requirements like a minimum number of supervised visits, and possibly several different tests. This particular organization then certifies that the team has met their standards. There are fewer organizatins that certify as it requires a more indepth relationship between the team and the organization. Certifying organizations normally also monitor the team to make sure they are complying with their regulations and in some cases also mentor and do additional training with their teams.
From The Delta Society
Are Pet Partners certified or registered?
Pet Partner teams are registered, not certified. Certification implies that Delta Society has participated in the handler's and the animal's training. Whereas registration requires training and screening, Delta Society does not certify that the team is trained to a certain level. Instead, the team is registered as having met minimum requirements.
Delta Society - Pet Partners Program FAQs
From Therapy Dog Inc.
It is a goal of Therapy Dogs Inc. to provide registration, support, and insurance for members who are involved in volunteer animal assisted activities.
Therapy Dogs Inc.
The membership process involves the handler/dog team passing the handling portion of the test followed by 3 successful supervised visits in the field.
Therapy Dogs International (TDI)
-Potential applicants are NOT required to take any Therapy Dog classes. At the present time, TDI does not offer or sanction any Therapy Dog classes.
Therapy Dogs International
TDI no longer allows people with disabilities to use their Assistance/Service Dogs to test as a new team.
This info was given by Ursula A. Kempe, President of TDI, but not posted on their website.
The above have Certified Evaluators and give Certificates of Completion. They do not *Certify* Therapy Dogs.