What to expect for Therapy Dogs International testing? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Jan 2017
Location: Pittsburgh PA
Posts: 199
What to expect for Therapy Dogs International testing?

Liffey and I have our therapy dog certification in three weeks with TDI. We have been enrolled for the last 12 weeks in a class specifically to prep for the test, and before that we did our CGC test. My trainer for the group class has told us how it will go and what will be expected and all that, but I would like to hear about other people's experiences. Things that were surprising, things I should know that I might not have been told in class, anything really difficult?

I know that my dog's weak areas are being distracted by strange dogs, having strangers touch his ears, "leave it," and supervised separation but he mostly does well, just isn't as confident or reliable with those things. Otherwise I just wanted to get a general idea of what to expect. I realize that it varies widely between testers and instructors and all that. Just looking for general anecdotes.

On the plus side we will be testing with about 8 other dogs that my dog knows, so I'll try to stay close to them and away from strange dogs, to minimize ear-splitting GSD barking in an echo-y room.

We ran through a 2 hour practice test today with 11 other dogs in the room and he did GREAT. I didn't bring any treats with me since we can't have them during the test. I was super proud of him! Then again, there was no meat for the "leave its" and no children involved.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 04-01-2017, 05:31 PM
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Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Illinois
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I have two that are certified. Never planned on it either. Midnite came to me completely dog reactive and I worked with him nonstop for several months. We went to a local dog event and it was in my eyes his final test on reactivity. He did really well and a group was there giving CGC tests. I figured what the heck and he passed with flying colors. They approached me and asked if I would consider the therapy dog test. I wasn't to sure because dog after dog was not making it and he never had any training for it, I only had him for about 4 months at that point. They kind of pushed it so I agreed. He passed with flying colors. They were impressed with him. Only a handful of dogs made it that day. He didn't know any of the dogs or people, tons of people, dogs barking, every distraction you can imagine.

I'm sure you will be fine. Just stay focused and don't be nervous. It worked well for me because I had no clue what the test was. Good Luck.
Deb and Liffey like this.

Misty- Samoyed Mix, Tannor- Golden Retriever CGC
Robyn- GSD CGC, TC, Midnite-GSD CGC,TC, Brennan-Golden Retriever CGC, Batman-Husky/Greyhound , Apollo-GSD
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