Animal-assisted interactions (AAI) programs - whether therapy, activities, education, reading, or other - have unique needs in their animals and in their people This book is written to give AAI program coordinators specific, practical guidance in ways to evaluate people (handlers) who wish to be part of their programs.
Many AAI programs focus on the evaluation of the animals, when, in comparing the handler and the animal, it is the handler who has the greatest potential to do harm. A skilled handler can compensate for a young or unskilled animal. But an unskilled handler is almost guaranteed to create headaches...handler evaluation is essential.
The Handler Factor provides detailed information on specific behaviors needed in therapy dog handlers for safety and success in visiting-animal programs. The book includes screening processes and reproducible forms.