What is a therapy dog? Can any dog become a certified therapy dog?
Curious in Columbus
A therapy dog has to love people of all ages and want to visit with them. I kept showing my owners that I was a dog meant to be shared by greeting everyone we met on walks. When I showed them how much people liked visiting with me, they took me to an evaluator for Therapy Dogs International and I passed my test. Any breed of dog can be evaluated to see if therapy dog work is for them. A dog has to be at least one year old, but training can start earlier than that and I was 2 years old when I became a certified therapy dog. I am almost three years old now and I love my work. Therapy dogs have to have a great temperament and tolerate other animals. I actually like most animals, too! Not to brag, but I think I’m a natural at this therapy dog stuff. I’d like to meet you, too, and your family and your friends, and your neighbors, and your pets – well, you get the idea!
What kind of dog are you?
Wondering in Westerville
Well, I am a very good dog, for one thing. And people tell me I am handsome. But I guess you are wondering what breed I am. I am a goldendoodle. My Dad was a 55 lb. standard white poodle and my Mom was a 75 lb. golden retriever. Guess how much I weigh? 95 pounds! I was no runt of my litter! Goldendoodles are considered “designer dogs” because they are intelligent, have good temperaments, and don’t shed as much as most dogs. Honestly, I still shed some but my goldendoodle sister doesn’t shed much at all. She also only weighs 53 pounds and we look very different even though she also had a white standard poodle Dad and a golden retriever Mom, but not the same parents as me. I’m pretty big for my breed, so some people are a little intimidated until they get to know me. One patient I visited told me I was as big as a calf, whatever that is. I guess she likes me, though, because she still pets me and even told me she loved me. I love her, too.