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Therapy Dog Training


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A therapy dog is a dog who visits places like schools, hospitals and nursing homes. Therapy dog training with Dog Training Elite teaches dogs to provide comfort, support, and affection to the people they meet, particularly vulnerable people like children, seniors, patients in hospitals, and so on.

Therapy dogs are not service dogs. Service dogs are trained to perform specific tasks to help a person who has a disability. This distinction is important because therapy dogs do not have the same access to public places like service dogs do. For example, service dogs can go into restaurants, but therapy dogs cannot. Therapy dogs still provide a valuable service and should receive therapy dog certification.

Dog Training Elite provides therapy dog training to give people emotional support in all stages of life.

Not all training packages may be available at our Dog Training Elite location, please reference our pricing page for complete information on services offered.


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Children can especially benefit from therapy animals - Dog Training Elite is happy to help your family with these certifications.

Who Do Therapy Dogs Help?


Therapy dogs may be regular visitors to a variety of people and places, with hospitals and rehabilitation centers being among the most common. Children, in particular, respond positively to therapy dogs.

Seniors in assisted living or people with mental disabilities who live in facilities and experience feelings of isolation also see a lot of benefits from visiting with a therapy dog.

Besides providing valuable social opportunities and relieving anxiety, therapy dogs may even help lower blood pressure and heart rate in patients and the other people they visit.

Why Are Therapy Dogs Important?


Therapy dogs offer unconditional love, non-judgmental interaction, reduce stress, anxiety and loneliness, and provide an overall positive distraction to ailments. Research shows therapy dogs can have a positive effect on a patient’s mood, stress and pain levels during facility stays.

Young patients — children — seem to benefit most from working with therapy dogs. They are more motivated to participate in treatments, feel optimistic about the future, and experience an overall sense of calm when a certified therapy dog is present.

For people who may have a hard time socializing due to mental disabilities or their living situation, therapy dogs can promote social interaction within their community and help them to connect.

We help your dog become a valued companion and beloved member of the family. Read what our customers have to say and then give us a call!

Amazing! Professional trainers who take all the time and effort their clients need to make sure each dog is trained and performing beautifully! DTE is worth every penny! Each trainer is top-notch and cares for each dog with love and respect. I give DTE a 100 out of 100 and recommend that every dog owner should show their love for their pups by ensuring the very best training for every stage of life. My heart felt thanks to the trainers at Dog Training Elite! I don't have the words to express my gratitude for the results. In 7 months, my pup transformed from a scared rescue to my loyal service dog who obeys and loves her family completely. 🥰👍 my life is forever changed! THANK YOU ALL!
— Matt Prentice
Posted May 27th 2024
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We can’t thank Dog Training Elite enough for the amazing work they’ve done with our dog. From puppy training to becoming a certified medical alert service dog, their journey with us has been nothing short of incredible. From day one, the trainers at Dog Training Elite were fantastic. They made us feel comfortable and confident, even when we didn’t know what we were doing. Their patience and knowledge made all the difference. Our daughter Rainey, who has autism and epilepsy, has found her best friend in our service dog. The bond they share is beautiful, and it’s changed Rainey’s life for the better. Seeing them together brings us so much joy and peace of mind. The trainers didn’t just train our dog - they trained us too! They made sure we were prepared for everything that comes with having a service dog. Their support and encouragement have been amazing, and we always felt like we could reach out with any questions. Dog Training Elite has given us more than just a service dog. They’ve given us security, independence for Rainey, and a whole lot of happiness. We are forever grateful and can’t recommend them enough to anyone looking for top-notch dog training. Thank you, Dog Training Elite, for everything. Our lives are so much better because of you!
— Brittany Joseph
Posted May 25th 2024
google
We can’t thank Dog Training Elite enough for the amazing work they’ve done with our dog. From puppy training to becoming a certified medical alert service dog, their journey with us has been nothing short of incredible. From day one, the trainers at Dog Training Elite were fantastic. They made us feel comfortable and confident, even when we didn’t know what we were doing. Their patience and knowledge made all the difference. Our daughter Rainey, who has autism and epilepsy, has found her best friend in our service dog. The bond they share is beautiful, and it’s changed Rainey’s life for the better. Seeing them together brings us so much joy and peace of mind. The trainers didn’t just train our dog - they trained us too! They made sure we were prepared for everything that comes with having a service dog. Their support and encouragement have been amazing, and we always felt like we could reach out with any questions. Dog Training Elite has given us more than just a service dog. They’ve given us security, independence for Rainey, and a whole lot of happiness. We are forever grateful and can’t recommend them enough to anyone looking for top-notch dog training. Thank you, Dog Training Elite, for everything. Our lives are so much better because of you!
— Brittany Joseph
Posted May 25th 2024
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Enrolling my pup in DTE training has been a game changer! After just 1 week, he no longer pulled when walking. After 2, we no longer got asked to leave public places due to his barking. After 3, I was comfortable taking him into various public settings. My boy barked with excitement when we pulled up to the facility and had the wiggliest butt during drop off. Needless to say , the trainers are great. We’ve bumped into the trainers a few times while out and they were always excited to see him. Thank you all for helping us obtain our service dog license. I will continue to spread the company name with pride.
— Precious
Posted May 17th 2024
google
We’ve had an exceptional experience with our dog trainer, especially with Deidre's guidance. Our journey began when our puppy was 10 weeks old and we dove headfirst into puppy training, eager to mold him into a therapy dog for hospital volunteer work. However, our optimism was quickly overshadowed by a frustrating hurdle: the dreaded habit of poop consumption. Feeling overwhelmed, we reached out to the trainer for help. They were incredibly supportive, offering a variety of solutions to address the issue. When the initial attempts fell short, they promptly provided alternative approaches, ensuring we never felt alone in our struggle. Thanks to their guidance, our puppy, now 5 months old, has overcome this unsavory habit! We're immensely grateful for their expertise in navigating this challenging aspect of puppyhood. Having successfully completed the puppy training program, we've seamlessly transitioned into the obedience program. Witnessing our puppy's progress has been truly remarkable and encouraging. He is developing into a patient, well-mannered dog and has learned many obedience skills that we can build on.
— Jackie Sitterud
Posted May 15th 2024
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Love the process my dog has made! Deidre has been a great teacher to both me and my dog, have noticed a huge difference in her personality since starting training! Would recommend elite dog training to anyone looking for consistent progress in their pup!
— Mariana Hincapie
Posted May 8th 2024
google
Simply amazing!!! My dog had been in other trainings and mild change, one day and she has learned more than she did in one month at other places ! Day one !! Simply WOW!
— Cynthia Ramos
Posted May 6th 2024
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They're really good with the dogs and the owners
— Don Read
Posted May 6th 2024
google
I can't say enough positive things about Dog Training Elite. My puppy is only 12 weeks and she is already starting to understand sit, wait, heel, place, break, lets go, and come. After the 3rd day my puppy new exactly where we were walking into Dog Training Elite facility and her tail would start wagging fast. The trainers are awesome and it's great giving your dog the ability to interact with other dogs in a controlled environment. I highly recommend you bring your dogs here for training!
— Justin Morales
Posted May 4th 2024
google
Elite dog training is the absolute best of the best!!! We have a service dog for my 9 year old, and between Evan, and Kaycee I couldn’t ask for better people to work with! They have gone absolutely above and beyond to help our pup do any, and everything possible to help our daughter live the most independent life despite her chronic health problems. The amount of time, and work they have put into Reggie these last two years is astounding. Because of them Reggie is able to spend countless weeks in the hospital with my 9 year old, he goes to school with her everyday, and goes everywhere she goes. He is by far the best dog ever because of the incredible people at Elite. You can absolutely tell the people at Elite love what they do! 5 stars is not enough to describe what an incredible company this is!! We LOVE Utah County Elite dog trainers!!
— Karissa Illu
Posted April 1st 2024
google
We have two small dogs with lots of energy, fear of larger dogs and people, and barkiness! The trainers at Dog Training Elite were so knowledgeable about how to approach their individual issues. After two weeks of training, we were amazed at the transformation. Our pups are much more confident, obedient, and willing to learn new skills. They are still young and have more to learn, so we are grateful for the continuing group classes and in home sessions. Thank you to Jake, McCall, Jeff and Dallin for all their help and patience with us and our pups!
— Jonathan and Marisa Schwartz
Posted May 2nd 2024
google
From the very first day I expressed interest in training my goldie, Ry, to be a service dog, this wonderful team has made the process nothing but positive. I can’t recommend them enough. I am wholeheartedly SO grateful for this training center and what they do. Ry has already made immense progress and I can’t wait to continue his training with DTENU :)
— Dresden Chamberlain
Posted May 1st 2024
google
I had an extremely positive experience with Dog Training Elite and Jeff. My dog is able to comfortably go on hikes off leash and is happier than ever.
— Zachary Kriesberg
Posted May 1st 2024
google
We have our new 3 month golden retriever training to be our service dog with them and they have been very professional ! He is learning very fast with all there training .i would recommend them .
— Sharlene Thum
Posted April 16th 2024
google
A knowledgable, well-maintained, and established dog trainer run by consummate professionals. We work closely with the trainer Deidre with our two-year-old german shepherd and could not recommend both her and the business more.
— Kimball McIntire
Posted April 12th 2024
google
I have nothing but great things to say about Dog Training Elite. Professional, knowledgeable, and they offer a wide variety of training options and classes. I am very happy I found this program for my dog. Addakias is awesome and always makes classes meaningful and fun. I highly recommend this business to anyone looking for general training to service dog training.
— Jordan Marie Diggs
Posted April 11th 2024
facebook
I have nothing but great things to say about Dog Training Elite. Professional, knowledgeable, and they offer a wide variety of training options and classes. I am very happy I found this program for my dog. Adakias is awesome and always makes classes meaningful and fun. I highly recommend this business to anyone looking for general training to service dog training.
— Jordan Diggs
Posted April 11th 2024
google
I love Dobermans my 10 year old passed away so I just got a rescue, she was mistreated and very reactive ,my standard training practices were not working.Jeff the trainer has rescued us. Don’t fear the e collar this has been the easiest fastest safest way I have ever trained a dog Thank u so much Jeff
— Lori Barker
Posted April 11th 2024
google
We have been working with them to train our very high energy and sometimes anxious Husky/Doberman 1yr old dog, and after just the first session he's been a totally different dog! Daidre has been amazing with him and very thorough with each session making sure our dog and we as his owners know what to do! They've been great to work with and I am so glad we chose them to help train our dog (and us) so we can give him his best life! Highly recommend!
— Rebekah Hunt
Posted April 8th 2024
google
Tyler was/is amazing! Our 4yr old mix breed dog was usually terrified of any man that walked into our house. Binny and Tyler became friends after the second training session. We learned SO much and it is very refreshing to have a properly trained dog. Our lives are changed as well as Binny’s. He is now able to just chill and be a dog in his place instead of barking and being scared. We can go to our camper by the river and not worry about him bolting out of the door as soon as someone opens it and he likes to sit outside with us now. We practice everyday and he’s still learning but we were given the proper direction to be able to make Binny more comfortable and our lives less stressful. Thank you so much Tyler we appreciate you and also enjoyed getting to know you as well. 10/10 recommend!
— Crystal Buss
Posted April 3rd 2024
google

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This cute pup is excited to learn and help provide support with his therapy training.

How Does a Dog Become a Therapy Dog?


If you have felt the benefits of owning a dog, you may feel inspired to help more people feel the unconditional love, joy and support your dog provides. However, having a friendly, loving personality isn’t enough for a dog to qualify as a therapy dog. Some other qualifications to consider are:

  • The age of your dog. Puppies do not make good therapy animals.
  • How obedient your dog is. It’s important your dog listens to you and obeys basic commands. Dogs that go through obedience training with Dog Training Elite have the perfect foundation to go onto therapy dog training, as long as they are old enough.
  • How social your dog is. Your dog may be affectionate with you — but are they affectionate with strangers? Do they like to receive attention from strangers, particularly petting?

Therapy Dog Handlers


As a dog owner, it’s important to reflect on whether you would like to become a therapy dog handler as well. If you enjoy connecting with people, becoming a therapy dog handler may be a great fit. You can also choose where to volunteer to better suit your interests — if you like kids, volunteer to visit schools or children’s hospitals. If you prefer to work with older people, then sign up to visit senior living centers.

Once you’ve determined that becoming a therapy dog handler and helping your dog become a therapy dog is the right move for the two of you, you’re ready to start therapy dog training. The trainers of Dog Training Elite are experts in the behaviors needed in a therapy dog and will help you and your dog either brush up on or master behaviors such as “leave it,” “watch me,” loose-leash walking and not jumping on other people.

To help your dog become well socialized, you may consider also signing up for one of Dog Training Elite’s group obedience classes. A group class environment is also beneficial because it helps your dog learn to be obedient when there are a lot of distractions around, a crucial skill for a therapy dog.

Once you’ve completed initial training, you’re ready to apply for therapy dog certification. However, it is important to note that this certification is not the end. It’s important to stay on top of your dog’s training and continue to help them be the best therapy dog they can be.

By working with Dog Training Elite, you will also be trained to be a therapy dog handler with your pup.

Proud Sponsor of The Malinois Foundation

At Dog Training Elite, we believe that Service Dogs save lives. It is our mission to make these life-saving companions available to our Veterans, First Responders, Women Survivors, and Children with Medical Needs. Whether it be for PTSD, Mobility Support, or Special Needs, Dog Training Elite works with the Malinois Foundation to heal and empower these individuals with a specialized service animal, a partner in life, and a new best friend.

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Why do Therapy Dog Training with Dog Training Elite?


The Dog Training Elite training method stands out because of its emphasis on positive reinforcement. Dogs are never punished for bad behavior, instead they are rewarded for good behavior. This kind of training makes a huge difference in your relationship with your dog, and will make a difference in how your dog interacts with other people.

The balanced training method of Dog Training Elite fosters a dog’s naturally loving and obedient nature. Focusing on positive reinforcement and rewarding good behavior helps build a strong bond between dog and owner built on love and trust. This foundation in turn becomes a great foundation for dog and owner to become a fabulous therapy team providing an invaluable service to the community.

If you feel therapy dog certification is right for you and your dog, get started by contacting Dog Training Elite. Request your free training demo and in-home assessment today.

Contact Dog Training Elite if you feel therapy dog training is right for you and your pup.

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