TobyAge: 9 years

Breed: Chocolate Labrador retriever

Likes: Visiting SCAN, Carrots, and Naps!

Dislikes: Thunder





Catherine Meadows, a rising senior at St. Catherine’s School, has established a new therapy dog program in partnership with SCAN. In addition, Catherine plans to increase awareness about therapy dogs in our community and has created informational resources for healthcare professionals and caregivers.

Catherine is the therapy dog facilitator for SCAN’s CAC, with support from her Mom, former Board member Lisa Meadows Ambrose, who is the chauffeur for Catherine and Toby, a certified therapy dog.

Therapy Dogs

What is a therapy dog?
A therapy dog is trained to give comfort to people, their families, and staff. Therapy dogs help in outpatient centers, hospitals, nursing homes, schools, and libraries.

How do therapy dogs help people?
Spending time with a therapy dog may improve your mood, increase activity, and lower distress.

Are therapy dogs and service dogs the same? 
Not all therapy dogs are service dogs.  Service dogs are trained to do specific tasks for one person with special needs. It can take a long time to train service dogs, beginning when they are puppies. A therapy dog has one “handler” and can help many people.

Can my dog be a therapy dog?
Therapy dogs should be calm, friendly, and loving to people of all ages. They also need to be healthy, not afraid of loud noises or crowds, and well trained in obedience. If this sounds like your dog, think about registering with a national group.

Where can I get more information?
American Kennel Club (AKC®):
(919) 233-9767  Website:

Therapy Dogs International (TDI®): (973) 252-9800  Website:


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