Since our inception in 1990, NCTD has grown to over 200 active volunteer handler-and-pet teams throughout 4 different regions. Each volunteer undergoes standards-based training and evaluation, and is required to take continuing education workshops. Training is rigorous and covers all aspects of visiting, including the importance of infection control and patient privacy. Our animal partners also undergo thorough training and evaluation, and are groomed and cleaned before visiting. The handler must obtain a health status report signed by the veterinarian. NCTD’s general liability insurance is in effect when teams are visiting at NCTD-approved facilities.
While most of our volunteers are handler/dog teams, (and most of the material you find on our website is written from that perspective) we sometimes consider cats and other animals as potential therapy animals for NCTD. If you want more information about this, please Contact Us.
We also have volunteers who may not have an animal, or whose therapy animal has retired. Yes, we can use that help too! These volunteers are often invaluable helping us with things like administrative tasks, event planning, or helping us work with the dogs in training classes and events. We welcome your support whether you have an animal or not.
See our Volunteer section for more information.