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In this lecture Barbara Handelman will cover the four most common resources through which disabled individuals find dogs to assist them with the challenges of daily life. A disabled person might apply for a dog through a service dog training organization; buy a puppy from a reputable breeder; adopt a puppy, adolescent or adult dog from a shelter or rescue organization to train for themselves or with the advice and support of professional trainers; apply to adopt a career change dog from a service dog training organization. In this lecture Barbara will discuss the pros and cons of each of these options. Over the past twenty years, Barbara has selected service dog candidates for herself, clients, and friends. It has been both a personal and professional roller coaster ride. Since 2005, Barbara has had seven service dog partners she selected and trained for herself with varying degrees of success. She has studied and published materials on temperament evaluation for working dog candidates. She also created the DVD series Clicker Train Your Own Assistance Dog, based on her own training experiences. Selecting candidates for service dog careers is risky business. Dogs change as they develop, and who they become is influenced by temperament, puppy enrichment experiences, early socialization, and innate breed predisposition to certain drive patterns. Approximately 50% of dogs who enter training as assistance dog candidates do not ultimately enter the workforce or retire early for a variety of temperament, stress, or physical health related reasons. These are daunting statistics. In this lecture Barbara will weave together twenty years of professional work in the service dog field and her personal journeys with the extraordinary dogs who became her own assistance dog partners and those who were simply wrong for the job. The first ‘live’ online presentation will be held on March 2nd, at 8:00pm EST and will be followed by a question and answer session moderated by Monique Udell, PhD.
Sponsor:E-training for Dogs
Speaker(s):Barbara Handelman, M.Ed., LCMHC, CDBC and Monique Udell, PhD (moderator)