Canine Ambassador Program (CAP) FAQ

Canine Ambassador Program

  • What is the purpose of the Canine Ambassador Program or CAP?

    Sweet Charity offers a Canine Ambassador Program to staff/dog teams for settings such as hospitals, seniors’ residences, nursing homes, schools, libraries, colleges and universities. The presence of a trained staff/pet team will enhance the school/business environment as the dog and the handler promote positive socialization and calm interaction.
  • What does the training entail?

    Prior to program implementation in a specific site, Sweet Charity training staff provide:
    • an assessment of dog suitability
    • 10 hours of handler/dog training  
    • Canadian Kennel Club Canine Good Neighbour certification
    • 2 one-hour visits within the site during the first year
    • ongoing communication with the trainer and site administrator, once the teams are active in the location  
    • 2 hour annual recertification.
    Our training reflects the understanding of the human/canine bond and the therapeutic benefits that this relationship can provide to a community.  
  • What are the costs?

    The training for each ambassador team costs $500. The annual recertification is $50.
  • How can I become involved?

    With the approval of your site administrator you may apply for the Canine Ambassador Program using the CAP Application Document. A meeting with you and your administrator will follow to ensure an understanding of the program expectations. After the signing of an agreement you will be informed of the next training sessions.
  • Have positive impacts of CAP been documented?

    In October 2016, Howard Bloom, PhD- Professor and Coordinator Child and Youth Care Program, Deborah M. Scharf, PhD- Research and Evaluation Services, and Garrett Hilborn - Research Analyst compiled the research report entitled "Implementation of the Sweet Charity Ambassador Dog Program in Simcoe County District School Board: A Pilot Study". Here is an exerpt from their report conclusion: "The results of this pilot program suggest that the Sweet Charity Ambassador Program had a positive impact on the staff and students involved. In particular, students and staff reported that the dogs helped create a welcoming and warm environment in the service areas that they were located, and that they also helped improve student wellbeing through reducing stress, anxiety and conflict". Read the rest of the research report by following this link: Sweet Charity Ambassador Dog Program Final Research Report In August 2017 the updated research report "Outcomes and Experiences of the Sweet Charity Canine Ambassador Program (CAP) - Children and Youth Mental Health" was published after the team's subsequent research. Read the stage 2 report here: Sweet Charity Canine Ambassador Program STAGE 2 Final Research Report