Dogs can have a variety of responsibilities in life. They are not just a pet, or a member of the family. They can also become certified therapy dogs.
Therapy dogs are used in hospitals and nursing homes across the community to provide affection and comfort to people. Any bread of dog can become a therapy dog, but it depends on the temperament of the animal.
Jolynn Payne, owner of Rocking Paw Dog Training Center, said the dogs must go through extensive training and love children and interact well with other animals.
“They have to understand to sit and wait and be patient and not to jump up on people,” Payne said. “They have to sit calmly while a child touches them, or maybe a person reaches out and hugs them. That is hard for dogs because they do not like to be grabbed.”
The process of getting a dog certified can take about a year to complete.