The CAP training program consists of a twelve week comprehensive Therapy Dog class to prepare the dog and handler for our Therapy Dog Evaluation. We teach using positive methods only. No prong, pinch, or ecollars collars are allowed. We will allow head halters and no pull harnesses as a handler aid IF they are not the sole means used to control the dog. We realize that handlers with issues like arthritis, knee and back pain or other matters may find these aides helpful. Experienced CAP members are always needed to help with evaluations and re-certifications of our members.

In the class, we teach partnership, attention, loose leash walking and how to meet a dog in a neutral manner as more than one CAP Therapy Team visits at each site on a scheduled day. We review CAP policies and procedures. Also taught will be tolerance of a dog’s body examination, crowded and clumsy petting and working around medical equipment. Behaviors useful to visiting such as go say hello and the dog placing his head in a lap will be taught. 

This class is required for all dogs and handlers who want to become a visiting CAP Therapy Team. The goal of our class is to prepare each dog and handler to pass their evaluation and become a confident, competent and cheerful visiting team. 


Dogs must be one year old in order to take this class. The cost is $270 which includes a single membership, class fees and the CAP Therapy Dog Evaluation. Participants are required to do a shadow visit, without their dog, at a CAP site of their choosing before the end of the class session. 

Participation in the class does not guarantee the team will pass the evaluation. Homework will be given and practice at home between classes will be helpful to a successful evaluation result. Upon completion of the class and passing the CAP Therapy Team Evaluation, qualified teams will be oriented at a CAP visitation site. 

  We are now taking applications for Winter Classes starting on Tuesday, April 11,2023 at 3:30pm at Joseph's Obedience Training and starting om Thursday, April 6, 2023 at 6:00pm at Chatham Dog Club.   We require COVID vaccination and masks worn during class.   We follow all COVID restrictions in our classes 

Click here to be directed to the online registration form.   For more information, please email Sheryl Benson or call her at 774-722-0333.

For anyone thinking of becoming a CAP Therapy Team, we would recommend you read the book: Teaming With Your Therapy Dog by Ann R. Howie, LICSW, ACSW. It is available on 

Companion Animal Program: 


Trainer, Sheryl Benson

Assistant Trainer, Susan Hunt


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