Pet Visiting Program

PET-Group-Photo

Do you have a dog that interacts well with other animals, loves people, is comfortable in crowds, obedient, and not fearful in new situations? Do you enjoy interacting with individuals of all ages and abilities, and have good communication with and control of your animal?

If you would like to have a positive impact on the wellness of seniors, reducing anxiety among students, and encouraging socialization among children, youth and adults with special needs, consider joining our Pet Visiting Team.

Pet visiting brightens days for people of all ages and abilities by providing touch time with animals. These opportunities have a tremendous wellness value. The benefits of animal touch, petting and social interaction include:

  • increased mobility
  • reduced stress, depression, and loneliness
  • increased self-esteem

We aim to match Pet Visitors with locations and populations that best suit their interests and availability. Facilities include:

  • Organizations that provide services to adults & youth of all ages and abilities
  • Retirement homes
  • Long-term care facilities
  • Universities & Colleges
  • Libraries

Eligibility

  • Dogs must be at least one year of age and have been in the care of their handler for at least 6 months.
    Dogs must be spayed or neutered with up to date vaccinations (Rabies and DH2PPV), and be able to respond to basic commands
  • Animals must be in good overall health (you may be asked to provide a letter or certificate of health from a veterinarian)
  • Handlers must enjoy interacting with individuals of all ages and abilities
  • Handlers must have good communication with and control of their animal, the animal should be reliable, under control, well behaved and confident
  • Each dog enrolled in the program must undergo a thorough assessment to ensure they have the right temperament to be a Pet Visitor

To determine if your pet may be suitable, download our expected behaviour checklist.

Commitment

  • At least a one year commitment
  • Ideally, at least 1 scheduled visit per month. Visits at each facility are normally 1 hour
  • Some facilities, i.e. colleges and universities may not have a regular visitation schedule

If you have any questions, or know of someone who may be a good fit for the Pet Visiting program, contact Natalie at nethier@hbspca.com