How do I start volunteering with her? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 11:04 AM Thread Starter
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How do I start volunteering with her?

I would like to visit hospitals/nursing homes/other places with my German Shepherd. She was sick for a while, but we found out it was her thyroid and she's doing a million times better. She has the perfect temperament . She lets kids be rough with her, without being aggressive or defensive. If she's in danger, I have to take her away, otherwise, she'll take it. She's not shy, but she's not hyper. She's always happy. And when she is frustrated with someone or in pain, and wants to be left alone, she licks the person until they stop. She did that with the vet when he was poking a sore spot when she had a skin infection. She's very good with commands, like sit and stay. She loves her treats, but if you tell her to stay, she will stay even if she can hear you in the treat jar. How do I get started? I want more information, but I have no idea where to begin. I read about how one program tests dogs, but they don't have any tests in Wisconsin.
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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 11:15 AM
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The local shelter I adopted my first dog in had a visitation program which I joined.

Call around to the local nursing homes, hospitals, or shelters and see if they have a program already in place and contact the program and tell them of your interest.

Volunteering with your dog can be so very rewarding, seeing the residents light up when you walk into the room or know they've been lined up for 30 minutes waiting for you because they didn't want to miss a moment when the dogs show up. You'll laugh and cry with them, but knowing you're brightening their day makes it all worthwhile

Shanna

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Jasmine - Female Miniature Poodle - born Aug 15, 2010
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 11:28 AM
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Where in wisconsin are you? I can get you in touch with some groups.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 11:46 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks. I'll call my local shelter. I live on the border of Kaukauna and Little Chute. It's right outside Appleton, if you don't know where those places are. Thank you, guys!
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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 11:55 AM
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Contact the Oshkosh Kennel Club or another Kennel club in the area. It's likely they have groups and also should offer CGC and TD testing.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 12:14 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you guys so much. I don't want this amazing behavior/temperament to go to waste
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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-03-2014, 12:15 PM
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Now that I think about it I think it's called the winnegamie kennel club.
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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-09-2014, 08:59 PM
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Keep training! If you can join any training groups or find some advanced classes you might find some others with working therapy dogs. Look up large therapy dog groups and the required obedience commands. Get the canine good citizen certification. Doing these you should be able to find a local therapy dog group or organization to join, and when your dog is ready you can begin visits. A lot of specific behavior and training is required to be a therapy dog before you can start visiting places. Like making sure the dog is fine around loud medical equipment, wheelchairs, people who walk with unusual gaits (that can make dogs uncomfortable or defensive as a result). You'll also need to learn the signs of your dog being tired and having enough, especially in the beginning. An established therapy dog group or organization is the best to help teach you this.

If you haven't checked them out yet:
Delta Therapy Dogs · Delta Society
Pet Partners - Pet Partners
Therapy Dogs International
https://www.therapydogs.com/Public/Home.aspx

https://www.akc.org/akctherapydog/organizations.cfm


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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-13-2014, 10:00 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you. I got the number for someone that does testing for Therapy Dogs Inc. (therapydogs.com). We talked about the requirements and the process. She is going for the first stage of testing on Wednesday. I hope (and think) it will go well. I just have to remember not to be nervous, so she won't be. When I first got her, I went get nervous around other dogs that growled and whatnot (thinking they would hurt her). That made her nervous. Now, I don't get nervous, and neither does she.
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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 12-14-2014, 02:03 AM
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Good luck with the test. She sounds like a good candidate.
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