What is an ideal Pet Therapy Team?

Pets & People strives to ensure that our therapy teams are the best representatives of animal assisted therapy that they can be. A pet therapy team consists of a handler and the pet. Both play equally important roles in a successful team. 

Ideal Handler

We strongly recommend that you have been through at least a basic obedience class with your pet and have kept up with training on a regular basis. The ideal Pets & People handler will exhibit excellent voice commands and gentle leash control of their pet. They should be comfortable engaging people in light conversation and have a willingness to volunteer in their community on a regular basis. They will also be very well attuned to their pet’s needs and limitations.

Ideal Pet

An ideal Pets & People dog will know basic obedience and easily follow its handler’s commands. The dog will exhibit “calm enthusiasm” and have a friendly and animated behavior when approaching new people. The ideal Pets & People cat will be able to wear a harness and ride calmly in a car. Both dogs and cats must be comfortable in strange environments, with loud noises and with people they do not know.

Important points:
1.    We only certify dogs and cats.
2.    Dogs must be at least 18 months old to be tested. 

3.    We do not certify pets to be brought to work. 
4.    Pets & People will not certify a current Service or Emotional Support pet.


  1. Liability Insurance (Policy covers if dog harms someone while at a Pets & People approved facility visit or event, provided all protocols have been adhered to)

  2. Yearly Volunteer Celebration where we bring all our teams together for a fun afternoon to thank you and celebrate all the good we do in our communities

  3. Ongoing support with visits

  4. Member Engagement Activities, from time-to-time

What are Member benefits?


How do I get Certified?

Pets & People follows a three-step process to be sure we have top-notch teams.

Contact us



Pets & People Foundation
9 Cornerstone Square B-400/197

Westford, MA 01886

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