Patients & Visitors : Caring Canines Program | Program Participation | SwedishAmerican
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Caring Canines Program | Program Participation

Everyone thinks that their own dog is special, but there are several characteristics that makes a dog a good candidate to be trained as a therapy dog. These include:
  • Dogs must be one year of age or older
  • Handler and dog must have completed basic obedience training
  • No history of animal or human aggression
  • Confident and outgoing
  • Likes to be petted and touched
  • Easy going
  • Handles stress well
  • Predictable
  • Well-mannered
  • Loves people and other dogs
  • Ability to be registered with a national therapy dog organization
  • Successful completion of a temperament assessment
Due to health and safety concerns, additional training specific to the needs of SwedishAmerican Hospital patients is requested for both dogs and handlers.

  • Both dogs and human must comply with health and vaccination requirements
  • Volunteers are requested to work two shifts per month
  • Successful completion of an intensive training program for both dogs and handlers is mandatory
  • Specific guidelines for behaviors, clothing and confidentiality must be followed
To volunteer for our program,you will need to complete a program application, a SwedishAmerican Volunteer application, and you and your dog must be registered with a therapy dog organization.

If you have questions about our program, or would like additional information, please call Claudia Aschbrenner, Caring Canines Program coordinator, a (779) 696-2166

Contact Us
1401 East State Street
Rockford, IL 61104
(779) 696-4400


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