Katie took the Therapy Dog test today and she passed! Hooray!!! I was so proud of her. I won't say she passed with flying colors because a bit of her wild child side did show itself and she also slimed the evaluator ;-) Her main difficulty was walking on a loose lead. Mostly she did great, but she got a little distracted sometimes by all of the other dog smells that were in the room. Everyone thought she was very sweet though and commented on how gorgeous she is. She did beautifully on the sit, down, stay and recall. I was a bit worried about the recall because on her way to me she had to pass about three feet in front of a dog that was not friendly. She didn't even look in that dog's direction, but came straight to her mama and did a perfect "front" sit.
The test includes the following:
1)Accepting a friendly stranger
2) Sitting politely for petting
3) Appearance and Grooming - the evaluator inspects the dog, lightly brushes it, and examines its ears and feet
4) Walk on a loose lead
5) Walk through a crowd
6) Sit, Down & Stay
7) Coming when called
8) Reaction to another dog
9) Reaction to distractions - the instructor knocked a walker over; Katie completely ignored it
10) Supervised Separation - I left her with the evaluator for 3 minutes
11) Say hello to people including children
12) Leave it
13) Comfort around medical equipment - such as walkers & wheelchairs
14) Acclimation to infirmities
Now that Katie is a therapy dog I have to figure out what we want to volunteer for. I should get a packet in the mail soon telling me what opportunities are available in our area. I'm hoping for a children's reading program...stay tuned for the adventures of Katie the Therapy Dog.
(Gary made a little movie of us getting ready for the official photo)
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"Welcome home to the Happy Haus" is the greeting I used to receive from Gary when we arrived home from work each day. Gary and I brought our daughter Natalie home from China in November 2011 to live with us in our cozy cottage. In October of 2013, we unexpectedly lost Gary, our dear husband, father and friend.
Our family includes our two sweet Newfoundland dogs, Katie and Louie. Newfoundlands are working dogs, so we make sure our two always have a job to do. Katie and Louie are both certified therapy dogs and bring lots of joy to people who are in need of some Newfie love. They have also competed in Rally Obedience. Katie has earned a Rally Advanced title and Louie has earned a Rally Excellent title. In keeping with Newf tradition, Katie has become a proficient draft dog while Louie prefers practicing water rescue whenever he gets an opportunity. They are also both protectors of their little sister, Natalie.