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Training and Certification

The process through which a horse/handler team become part of the TLH program is registration. Registration confirms that the team meets the requirements of our program and are suitable to participate in our therapy program. There is a distinction, therapy teams are registered. there are currently no third party certifications recognized for animals - so at this time it is just registration. 

We have a unique combination of 2 handlers and one animal working together. One lead and one assistant. We believe this is important for proper handling for both animal welfare and client safety reasons. We promote the importance of balance between a skilled handler and an appropriate animal and a positive relationship between the two. 

A member of the TLH family will assess those who have completed the required volunteer hours, coursework and an in person practicum to verify the suitability to conduct an in-person assessment or evaluation. 

TLH miniature therapy horse program has high standards in the field of therapy animal team registration and requires volunteer education and recurring evaluation of therapy animal teams, as well as providing ongoing continuing education, in order to ensure professionalism, safety and animal welfare practices in all visits. 

Registration of a handler through TLH requires the volunteer to manage the horse through many stages of evaluation. (Evaluation Document)

Every community visit (therapy or ambassadors) requires a registered handler to be responsible for coordinating the visit and managing the assigned horse during the visit. One registered handler is required for each horse. One crew member (Community Crew) will accompany the hander(s) on the visit. One crew member must be present for every two horses at the visit or event. Horses cannot be left unattended at any time. Handlers and Community Crew members can be responsible for monitoring a horse when it is on a break from the public or on a rest break in a vehicle. Horses cannot be held or attended to by anyone who has not completed the basic training and waivers. The primary handler assigns crew member roles throughout the duration of a therapy visit. The handler cannot relinquish control of the horse to a member of the public. If a person wishes to have a photo taken with the horse, the handler may step back but must contain control (with the lead or goat lead) at all times. 

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