HOW TO START?
If you feel that you and your companion animal may be interested in becoming a volunteer visiting team with Mid South Therapy Dogs & Friends, the first step is for you to read thoroughly this document about the requirements and process to qualify for this very unique kind of volunteering.
Once you have read and considered this information, make a list of your questions and then call or email us. We would like to hear from you and discuss the training and time commitments, answer all your questions about the process, and help you determine whether this is a kind of volunteering that you and your animal will enjoy before you invest in becoming trained, registered and insured. Please recognize that if your animal does not love this idea as much as you do, you will never find it to be rewarding - you are choosing it, but your animal is being drafted!
Introductory Seminar Animals do not attend
Do you and your animal have - THE RIGHT STUFF - to become a therapy team ... this seminar identifies the desirable characteristics that make an animal/handler successful as a therapy team. This 60 minute presentation is an overview of therapy handler/animal work and is designed for the potential handler. You will learn about becoming a registered therapy team. If you are interested in giving back to your community and taking the beautiful bond you have with your animal to an entirely different level, you should definitely come to the Introductory Seminar.
Therapy Team Training Workshop
The Team Training Workshop is designed for those teams that have been approved to move to the advance training which combines lecture, discussion and role playing. It covers the fundamental information needed to succeed as a Therapy Team. Learn the skills needed to visit safely with your animal in various settings.
Workshop (Each session covers different subject material)
Therapy Team Refresher Class
Handlers who are due for renewal testing often feel anxious about going through the test again. Even teams who visit regularly can benefit from reminders of key handling skills. The handlers will also be updated on the latest policies and procedures and will receive their renewal packet.
Location: Baptist Memorial Hospital Collierville
If you think your dog has the right stuff, but needs a little work first, contact a dog trainer. We recommend Donna Eddins. Be sure to ask about their experience in animal-assisted work. Be cautious about taking classes from someone who has never worked with therapy animals, and is not extremely familiar with therapy training and the specifics of what is required of not only your animal but of YOU - as the handler. Remember, this is not just about your dog. You are a Therapy Team!