PTSD Service Dog Training
As you work through our application process, you’ll be providing us with the key information that will assist our instructors in matching the best suited dog for you that will determine your ultimate success. With a clear understanding of our client goals and objectives, we’ve been able to craft a program that you’ll be excited to participate in since it relates to your personal needs. Once the certified America’s VetDogs training team understands the needs of an applicant (several months prior to the student attending class), they will build upon foundation tasks and introduce advanced tasks that will specifically help mitigate our student’s needs. These tasks are taught on class and can provide a calming effect and sense of security for its handler.
During the first week of class, students are introduced to basic obedience and commands, ways to motivate and reward their dogs and service dog handling techniques in preparation for receiving their new PTSD service dog. On day two and three they work with demonstration dogs, get acquainted with equipment and learn how to respond to dog behavior, then they are introduced to their dogs. For the remainder of the week, they work on the fundamentals of communicating and working with their new partner in various environments both on campus and in other training environments. Training includes basic and advanced obedience, primary and secondary motivators, discussions on dog care, etiquette, canine communication and learning theory and more.
As the class carries over into week two, students will gain confidence in leading their dog through advanced handling techniques. They will have a clear understanding of how to read their dog and anticipate their dog’s reaction to environmental changes, use of appropriate equipment to become the most effective handler and understand how to motivate and reward their dog throughout the working day. Students will also learn how to work with their dogs in various settings that include residential and country environments; outings to malls, grocery stores and other stores, transportation venues including overland rail, train platforms, airports and other types of real-world situations.
Prior to the completion of class, each new handler and dog team will have to pass the Assistance Dog International Public Access Test. The test is to determine if the dog is safe to be in public and that the handler demonstrates that he/she has control of the dog at all times.