An integral part of the CAIS Certificate is the partcipation in a weekly fieldwork site with canines. Please read below for more specifics about this requirement.
- This fieldwork component is not specific to animal-assisted interventions; instead, you must be able to work hands-on with multiple canines.
- The fieldwork organization may require CAIS students to follow the site’s rules regarding volunteering. This can include attending the organization’s training/orientation, meeting criteria to handle various dogs, completing a criminal background check, etc. It is up to the student whether s/he is able to meet those criteria or should seek a different site.
- The fieldwork organization is not responsible to document or report to DU anything about the student’s activities during the fieldwork placement. The only documentation needed from the fieldwork site is a signed affirmation verifying that the student will do fieldwork at that organization.
- The CAIS student will coordinate his/her hours with the fieldwork site.
- Things the CAIS student will do with dogs include:
- Observe dogs in kennels and outside of kennels
- Take dogs on walks in approved areas around the organization’s grounds
- Do basic training of dogs (at the fieldwork site, never at locations away from the organization)
- Take video of their training experiences
CAIS students write reports on and occasionally film their fieldwork activities that focus on canine behavior, canine cognition, canine responses to various stimuli, canine responses to various training attempts, etc. The students focus on the dogs (and on the dogs’ responses to them), not on the fieldwork organization.