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What is the Gold Certificate Test?

      The Gold Certificate testing is for therapy teams interested in working in a hospital type environment.  This test builds on the general therapy dog test and adds elements that determine whether the team is prepared for the conditions they may encounter in hospitals. The Gold Certificate is a 4 week course taken through Jackies Basics and Beyond training center.


Pre-requisites for testing:

  -Successful completion of Canine Good Citizen test.

  -Successfully passing Dogs With A Purpose therapy dog team test.

How Does My Dog Qualify For The Gold Certificate? 


      Any team that has a Therapy Dog certification from Dogs With A Purpose, is eligible to take the Gold Certificate test. The Gold test is taken at the VA Hospital In Durham. The test is offered 3 times a year, the dates and times will be listed on under the upcoming events tab. The Gold Certificate is limited to 4 dogs at each testing date.

Elements of Test:


Comfort with entering a hospital facility

  -Team must enter through automatic doors. Dog must be calm and at handler’s side.

  -Team must use elevator with comfort and courtesy.  When doors open, dog must wait at handler’s side until given permission     to enter.  Handler must ask other people on elevator if they are comfortable with the dog joining.      


Good manners while walking through hospital corridors

  -In the hospital, dogs will encounter open doors, nursing stations and many unusual smells. The dog must stay by handler’s side without obstructing the corridor. The team may not enter rooms without permission.


Tolerance of floor cleaning machines

  -Handler team must walk within two feet of loud floor cleaning machine in hospital corridor 


Comfort visiting with patient in hospital bed

  -Dog must be petted either on the bed (with a sheet barrier) or standing beside the bed.


Tolerance for a crowd in the room

  -Some patients have visitors while the handler team is in the room. Dog must show comfort being petted and hugged by               others in the room.


Tolerance of loud alarms and announcements

  -Alarms on medical equipment and emergency code announcements are commonplace in hospital. Handler team must remain calm when these situations occur.  


Ignoring food carts and trays

  -Most hospitals leave food carts in hall and many patients have food on trays in their rooms. Dogs must ignore all food.

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