THERAPY DOG INFORMATION, FACTS & REQUIREMENTS
Though, it may seem unlikely but there are no official, legal therapy dog requirements. Certain
public institutions may think you need to have specific therapy dog requirements before you can
visit them with your dog, but this is not the case. There are no actual therapy dog requirements,
but to have a stress-free public outing, it can be helpful to present a non-official ID card and/or to
outfit your dog with a vest.
WHAT IS A THERAPY DOG? WHAT DO THERAPY DOGS DO?
Therapy dogs are dogs that are trained to visit people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing
homes, schools, and disaster recovery areas to provide therapeutic comfort and affection. It is a
common misconception that a therapy dog may also be a service dog, but this is not true.
Therapy dogs are not trained for specific tasks, or objectives. Therapy dogs simply provide
affection to those in need at hospitals, retirement homes or schools.
Some states have laws defining therapy dogs; however, therapy dogs typically will not have the
same access rights as a working service dog. It is fraudulent to misrepresent your therapy dog as
a service dog if it is not one, and we do recommend using a vest, tag or card to help clear up any
miscommunication that may occur between you and members of the public.
IDENTIFY AS A THERAPY DOG
A therapy dog vest will clearly identify your dog as a therapy dog while you are visiting
institutions. A therapy dog vest serves as a clear visual indicator to the public that your dog is a
therapy dog. All of our therapy dog vests come with your choice of a free therapy dog patch that
indicates your dog as a “Therapy Dog.” You may also choose to have us sew on additional
patches onto your dog’s vest. Our patches display messages written in thick thread for easy
reading. Using not only the therapy dog vest and patches, we also supply therapy dog ID cards
and therapy dog tags to help identification during visitations.