Marianne Pinkham, Spectrum Generations
Thursday, April 2, 2015 - 11:30am
Becoming a therapy dog team is a rewarding volunteer activity for everyone involved. Join professional dog trainer Jean Conte for a six-session class sponsored by Spectrum Generations Coastal Community Center in Damariscotta and held at The Lincoln Home, 22 River Road in Newcastle, each Thursday at 5 p.m. beginning on April 9 and continuing through May 14.
Four-footed therapists give something special to enhance the health and well-being of others.
A therapy dog is a dog with an outstanding temperament who tolerates other animals, visits with people and loves children. Training therapy teams properly from day one is the key to success. General obedience training is a very necessary beginning, but what is also required is the desensitization and orientation course that Jean will be offering.
A course such as this allows the dog and owner to experience many things that do not occur normally at home, walkers and wheelchairs being a prime example. Dogs are highly sensitive to noises that we barely hear or tune out regularly. The high pitched whine of a respirator for instance, can be very irritating to a dogs ears, so dogs must adapt by degrees to noises such as this.
Please note potential applicants for Therapy Dogs International Testing are not required to take any therapy dog classes, which are not sanctioned by TDI. TDI registration is a natural extension of the AKC-Canine Good Citizen program for dogs who are particularly sensitive and attentive to people. For more information about TDI Testing requirements, this includes some steps of the AKC-CGC test go to: www.tdi-dog.org.
Fee for the course is $80, payable to the instructor. For more information and to register, call 207-563-1363. All ages welcome as well as dogs (and their best friends) who have become Canine Good Citizens or participated in basic obedience class.