Standards for Safety


You might have seen an article recently with an eye-catching headline referring to therapy dogs and superbugs. While that headline is somewhat alarmist, the concern about the transmission of germs is an important consideration at all facilities where Pet Partners teams visit.

Therapy animals can be a vector for germs and, as the article points out, even when the animal arrives for the visit clean and groomed, poor hand hygiene can undermine those efforts. We should all be advocating for high standards for therapy animals ranging from infection prevention to animal welfare. It’s our responsibility to keep our clients and our animals safe.

We want you to be as prepared as possible should this topic come up at facilities where you visit. This  standards handout  is a great summary document you can share. We are also proud to have the only courseork on infection prevention and control for therapy animals that is endorsed by the  Society of Healthcare Epidemiology of America .

In the spirit of ensuring our teams are the best prepared and most professional, this online course is now free of charge to all current volunteers. We encourage all volunteers to take advantage of this continuing education opportunity. Visit the Training Center (through the Volunteer Center on the Pet Partners website) to sign up for the course Infection Prevention and Control.

Pet Partners is proud to have some of the highest standards in the industry, ranging from training and evaluation to animal welfare and safety. Nonetheless, this is a valuable opportunity to remind ourselves to be vigilant and meticulous about applying best practices on all our visits.

Thank you for your commitment to safe and effective therapy animal visits.

Warm regards,

Mary Margaret
Chief Mission Officer

​Return to Announcements Page