A couple of years ago, Greenhounds introduced our first ever Greenhounds Therapy dog Bobby! With the great work that therapy dogs do in the community and the ideal nature of the Greyhound, there's no surprise that a couple more Greenhounds have gone on to get their Therapy dog accreditations!
Buddy & Lucy are two Greenhounds that were adopted via Greyhounds As Pets (www.gapnsw.com.au) who went on to get their accreditations via the Delta Therapy Dogs Program. Their owner outlines what was involved in the process below.
Buddy our 6 year old fawn boy and Lucy our 4 year old black & white girl have recently joined the Delta Therapy Dogs Program. This heart-warming program brings the joy of animal companionship to those who need it most.
The process was relatively straightforward. We completed an online volunteer application and booked in for our dog behaviour assessments. This required Buddy & Lucy to have some basic obedience, walk through a noisy crowd (simulated of course), walking past food, asking them to stop, come on call and a few other bits and pieces.
Greyhounds have an exception to the sitting rule which is great because they're not usually comfortable doing this. For our testing, both Buddy and Lucy remained on a long lead for the recall exercise which was great as you would know they are “breed for speed”.
We then had our photos taken with our dogs and attended a training session for us the next weekend to learn how to be a successful Therapy team.
The time commitment is either weekly or fortnightly visiting and these visits are aimed at bringing the benefits of pet therapy to the sick and infirm – children and adults who are in hospitals and nursing homes around Australia.
It's early days, but I'm positive we will create some wonderful memories and experiences together. Already the “four of us” have met some lovely people with a range of dogs on the same mission as we are.
For more info on volunteering for the Delta Therapy Dogs Program see www.deltasociety.com.au