Step 3: Practice Lab
About Practice Lab
Practice Lab is a 3-hour class in which you will observe and practice the types of interactions you might encounter in a real therapy dog visit. Many handlers tell us it's the most important part of their training. In Practice Lab, you will work with experienced teams to learn how to manage the often unexpected complexities and challenges of therapy dog visits and learn best practices for visit facilitation. Drawing on the real-life experience of our instructors, we'll expose you to some of the more challenging situations you're likely to encounter when visiting with your dog. There will be plenty of time for feedback and questions during this fun, interactive learning experience.
We believe that ongoing mentoring creates confident, safe, effective teams.
"All of my training in the coursework with you and your Project Canine team came right into action. I was amazed at how many of the practical situations we acted out in class came to fruition. And Kip and I were ready for them! I felt completely ready and able to handle each new experience with a resident, and truly enjoy one another." ~Certified therapy dog handler Jessica
"I am amazed that some of the scenarios you talked about in the pet therapy class about visiting have happened, so I felt prepared. Thank you!"~Certified therapy dog handler Stacy
Supervised Shadow Visits
Practice Lab may not be available in your area. If that is the case, your Project Canine representative will arrange for you to complete supervised visits in a real facility. This is the "Shadow Visit" process. In the first shadow, you'll observe an experienced team conducting an actual visit. In the second shadow, you'll be observed by your Project Canine representative as you visit with your dog. While you're not yet certified to visit, you are provisionally covered by Project Canine's liability insurance for your two supervised shadow visits.
Please schedule your supervised shadow visits with your representative after you pass your exam.