Paws’itive Teams Therapy Dog Programs made a commitment from the beginning to only certify therapy dog teams in areas of underserved needs. Goal-directed therapy is significantly different from the usual “meet and greet” hospital and nursing home type of animal assisted activities. In the PAAT (Paws’itive Animal Assisted Therapy) program, the dogs are used both as a tool and a motivator to help clients (children and adults) achieve clearly defined goals as set by their therapist or teacher.
Paws’itive Animal Assisted Therapy (PAAT):
Handlers in goal-directed therapy are required to “think on their feet” as they will be requested to come up with activities their dogs can do to help accomplish the goals set by the professionals. This is different from other forms of therapy volunteering and involves far more creative thinking from the handler, who has to be actively involved with designing tasks for each interaction.
Relationship with Facilities: We partner with facilities within San Diego County who serve a wide variety of populations that can benefit from interactions with carefully selected dogs. It is essential that our involvement includes a close relationship with health/human service professionals who set goals for their clients, centered around the activities our therapy dog teams provide. A part of our program includes the requirement of measurement tools developed by the facility staff so that we know that our efforts are truly resulting in goals being met as a result of the activities which include our canine teams. Click here for a description of current PAAT sites.<site descriptionaug2015>
- Handler and dog must have completed the Paws’itive Teams Therapy Dog Prep School. Click here for Prep School Registration Form.
- Handler must attend the Program Introduction Presentation, following completion of Therapy Dog Prep School. Contact us for schedule of upcoming presentations, held in February, May, August, and November.)
- Handler must submit Therapy Dog Volunteer Application. Click here to fill out Therapy Volunteer Application Form
- Minimum age of handler is 18 yrs old.
- All volunteers must complete the background check through Paws’itive Teams.
- A veterinarian must submit report of annual examination and proof of current vaccinations.
Teams must be re-certified annually and all volunteers will be required to donate a minimum of 24 hours annually. Contribution towards administrative tasks and committee work also counts towards this requirement. Teams (dog and handler) are evaluated bi-annually. Certification is only valid for Paws’itive Teams sponsored activities. All therapy volunteers with Paws’itive Teams are provided a copy of our Therapy Dog Handbook prior to certification.
Ordering Your Pawsitive Teams Shirts
Pawsitive Teams partners with Lands’ End Business Outfitters to provide embroidered shirts in our “EVERGREEN” color. Although a green shirt is the preferred color for our volunteers, some shirts are available in “DESERT KHAKI” or “WHITE” as alternatives.
Here’s the Pawsitive Teams Store
on the Lands’ End Website:
If you should need to talk with Lands’ End Customer Service, we suggest you call the main consumer number at 1-800-963-4816 as they are open 7/24 (Business Outfitters is only open Monday-Friday during business hours.).