Friday, May 23, 2014

Certification and Documentation

Service Dog Certificates and IDs - There is no legitimate service dog certification, registration or IDs. The ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) does not require dogs or handlers to be certified, registered or have IDs. Here is a great article from Service Dog Central on this topic

Training a Service Dog is complex and encompasses many areas, not just training but also socialization, desensitization and health testing. It can be daunting and overwhelming so it helps to keep good documentation and be organized. Here is what I do

3 Ring Binders - I have a 3 ring binder for Luke it is sub divided into sections so I can easily find what I need. It has his info from his breeder, Vet and Health Testing records, supply/training receipts, Socialization check list, Training Goals and Schedule, Commands and Tasks list and Evaluations (such as STAR Puppy cert, CGC Cert, Public Access Test ect)

Excel/ Word Training Logs - I have an Excel Spreadsheet that I use to keep track of all of Luke's training. The sheet includes Date, Location, What we worked on, The Good, What needs more work and how long we trained. At the bottom of the sheet table it tallies the time we worked.  In Word I have made a simple weekly table,I print it out blank and use it to make a schedule of what we will work on for the week.

Videos - This is something I will be starting soon. I will be taking videos of Luke and I (and Ara) training. This will not be used for instruction but as a way to document what we are doing and also to show our progress. We will also be taking video when Luke does the Public Access Test (and practices). I will be posting some of the training videos online to share our progress with everyone in the future.

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