Duke passed the Therapy Dogs International evaluation! He's a vet visit and some paperwork away from providing some puppylove therapy.
Since he already had his Canine Good Citizen, the evaluator just needed to test him on a few things, namely how well he did around other dogs (easy to evaluate when you're at a huge dog show), how he did with wheelchairs and medical equipment (again, easy to evaluate when there's huge crowds), and how well he did "leave-it" around food. Fortunately for me, Duke has figured out that humans are mean and that food we place on the ground isn't necessarily for him. If I put food down on the ground, he usually ignores it. So the evaluator put a piece of pepperoni on the ground and told me to walk as close to it as I could, and I could give a small leash correction or verbal correction, but not to let him have it. Duke practically walked right over the food and didn't even look at it. Yay Duke!
There's another therapy dog group I recently learned about (Bright and Beautiful Therapy dogs) that I'm also considering. However, you can't be members of multiple therapy dog groups at a time, so I do need to choose within the next couple months. I had already made arrangements for Duke to be tested through TDI when I learned about Bright and Beautiful, so I went ahead with the test. Bright and Beautiful seems to be a larger group and more organized in my area, so I am leaning towards it, but right now my options are open.
8 hours ago