Sit… Stay… Good Pup! Day 1 of Therapy Dog Training

Let me warn you, this post is dog-centric, so if you aren’t a big animal fan, please disregard!  Ok, for those of you who don’t mind hearing about my super sweet dog’s foray into becoming a therapy dog, here is what is going on!

Yesterday was our first “official” day of training to become a certified therapy dog.  For the past 2 years (as long as Sadie has been with me) I have been told by so many people what a wonderful therapy dog she would be due to her temperament and size.  Therefore, when I saw an article in the local newspaper about therapy dogs and that one of the local hospitals was offering a class for dogs to be certified we hopped on that pronto!

Anyway, yesterday Mom and I showed up last night a bit early (we were excited, it was like Sadie’s first day of school – obligatory pics are below) to get registered.  We had her bag all packed with a list of all of her vaccinations, harness, special leash, dog training treats, bottled water and a bowl for her to drink out of, and her allergy medicine.  Once we navigated our around the parking garage and went inside we boarded the elevator (which as we found out later, most dogs flip out when they are on, however, our game day condo in Knoxville has an elevator which Sadie has been riding forever, so she was an old pro at the elevator!).  When we stepped off of the elevator, we were greeted by very enthusiastic volunteers and we got Sadie all signed up and ready to go.  Before long she had met (sniffed the butts!) of all of the other dogs in the class and was sitting contentedly at my feet while some of the other dogs were barking (I was a proud doggie parent at that point!).

The training began shortly thereafter and we did a series of training checks (sit, stay, walking on a loose leash and down – still working on down.  For some reason when Sadie’s head goes down the backside goes up!).  The dogs were all doing great and I feel like they were learning a lot and I think Sadie was having fun.  However, did I mention the air conditioning was out?  Yep, in the South, on a hot summer day, the air conditioning in the hospital where we were was out.  To their credit, none of the owners complained.  I met a couple of the other pet parents and they were all super nice (I guess to do a pet therapy training session you would have to be at least semi-nice, right?).

Anyway, we have our homework to work on this week before next weeks session, so Sadie will be having a full couple of months until this training is completed.  Yesterday as we were leaving the hospital, apparently she had too much fun and fell asleep in the back seat and she has been snoozing all day is currently snoring quite happily on the cushion in my office!

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Until We Meet Again,

JCP

4 thoughts on “Sit… Stay… Good Pup! Day 1 of Therapy Dog Training

    • juliecpierson says:

      She did great! Thanks for all the good wishes! She is exhausted now, but even the instructor said that Sadie had a gift for being with people. I was about to burst with pride yesterday!

  1. Taylor says:

    Go Sadie Go! So proud of her (and you!). You’ll have to keep me updated on her progress, and maybe one day Addie will calm down and be able to participate in a program like this.

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