Is Your Dog Ready for Therapy Dog Visits?

(Note: that this is not the actual test but just a fun test to see if your dog is ready).
There are many examinations that various associations use to determine if a dog is ready to work as a therapy dog. Admittedly, not being ready can have disastrous results. We are categorically, always responsible for our dog’s conduct. So, how do we know, when we’re ready? You know Fido or Fifi better than any trainer or evaluator. Make your own evaluation! Take the following test:
  1. Is your dog well socialized?
    • A. He’s accustomed to many kinds of situations, people and other dogs.
      B. Yes, I let him out in the yard everyday and that’s as far as he goes.
  2. Does your dog jump up on people?
    • A. I don’t permit this conduct; I use a sharp correction.
      B. Only when they ring the bell, meet us in the street, talk to him or me, etc.
  3. Are you surprised when your dog puts his/her best paw forward?
    • A. No, I’ve worked hard to train him and I expect him to behave.
      B. Yeah! You never know (WHAT he’ll do…?)
  4. How does your dog react to rolling shopping carts, roller blades or skateboards?
    • A. He calmly watches with curiosity as they move past.
      B. The eyes glaze over, the mouth foams and with curled up lips he barks and growls furiously.
  5. How do you and your dog handle the unexpected?
    • A. Appropriately, just like Lassie.
      B. Does Cujo come to mind?
  6. How does your dog behave at the Vet or Groomer?
    • A. He compliantly agrees to whatever fate awaits him.
      B. They meet us at the door with a muzzle.

  7. Have you and your dog had any formal training? How about at home training yourself?
    • A. Yes, we have been through at least beginners and we still practice at home.
      B. We’re perfect, we don’t need no stinkin’ training.
  8. Does your dog have any health problems?
    • A. No, as far as I know he’s fine, but I check him regularly for lumps and sensitive areas.
      B. He has this interesting case of flatulence. Oh, and bad breath.
  9. How does your dog accept a treat?
    • A. He sits and waits until given the signal and then gently takes it from my hand.
      B. How many fingers do you have?
  10. Do people cringe at the sight your dog?
    • A. No, they smile sweetly and pat him fondly.
      B. Is that what they’re doing? Oh.
  11. What happens when your dog sees another dog?
    • A. He exhibits mild curiosity and wags his tail.
      B. He growls, snarls, and drags you down the street.
  12. Does your dog like children?
    • A. Yes, he wags his tail and wants to go play – gently. He knows not to jump up and scare little ones.
      B. Yes, baked, broiled or boiled, he doesn’t care.
  13. Does your dog bark incessantly – ever?
    • A. No, not ever. He knows that is unacceptable behavior
      B. Yes, he’s a true watch dog heh, heh. You should see what happens when the bell rings.
  14. Does your dog growl at strangers, children, or anyone for that matter (postman??)?
    • A. No, my dog really likes people.
      B. Yes, occasionally he just doesn’t like someone.
  15. Does the postman cross the street when he sees your approach with your dog?
    • A. No, the postman likes to pet my Fido. They’ve been good friends since he was a pup (Fido,that is).
      B. The postman, the UPS man, the meter reader ..They all run away!

If you scored mostly A) responses – congratulations!! You and Bowser are ready!! The world is your oyster and you should get tested as soon as possible.

If you however, scored even one – yes, one . B). response perhaps you should consider a training course before venturing out to do Therapy work with your dog.

The Bright & Beautiful Therapy Dogs, Inc.


The Bright & Beautiful Therapy Dogs, Inc. is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) all volunteer organization. We do not accept monetary compensation for our visitation. Testing fees and membership fees are donations and are tax deductible.

Contact Us

80 Powder Mill Road, Morris Plains, NJ 07950
Phone: (973)292-3316
Toll-Free (888) 738-5770
Fax: (973)292-9559