Are you considering volunteering with your pet in the community? Great! Here are a few important things to know before getting started:
Pet therapy is a broad term that includes Animal-Assisted Therapy (AAT) and other Animal-Assisted Activities (AAA). Pet Therapy means that you and your pet volunteer together as a “Team” at a care or service providing facility, or as part of a program that would benefit from the presence of a Therapy Pet. Facilities can include, but are not limited to, hospitals, senior centers, libraries, local schools etc. Volunteering activities can include: having a child read to your dog, a patient pet your miniature horse, and an individual with a disability play with your cat. When volunteering, you choose the location and determine how many times/hours per week and the length of the session that works best for you and your pet. The length of the session can not exceed two hours.
It is important to understand that having a Therapy Pet does not mean your pets can go with you to the restaurant, fly next to you on the plane, or come to work with you. Please read our FAQ’s for a full description of what a Therapy Pet means.
Here are the basic steps to get you volunteering with your pet!
Step 1: Pet suitability – Does your pet have the proper temperament?
Step 2: Training – Is your pet under control and well behaved and can they perform the needed tasks?
Step 3: Evaluations and Handler Course – An online test (for you), and evaluation and health screening for your pet.
Step 4: Registration – Register with a national organization.
Step 5: Sign-up with Therapy Pets of Northern Arizona.
Step 6:Find a local site- You and your pet are now ready to find a place that best fits your preferences.