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.    All pets must be current with rabies vaccine.
3.    Dogs should be at least 18 months old to be tested. 

4.    We do not certify pets to be brought to work. 
5.    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 Workshops, Zoom Social Hours, Online Member Discussion Groups 

What are Member benefits?


How do I get Certified?

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