Frequently Asked Questions about our PAWS Family Dog Service:

The workshop I want to book onto is fully booked. What can I do?

We do not have a waiting list so would advise you to keep checking the website as on occasion, someone cancels their ticket.  Bookings for a series will cease one week before the course starts. After this date, please register your interest in future workshops. When we publish our new workshop schedule for 2019 we will notify you by email.

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Where are you holding workshops in 2018?

For a list of the 2018 workshop locations, visit the Family Dog Workshops 2018 page.

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Am I eligible?

These workshops are open to parents of children aged between 3-16 years, with a clinical diagnosis of autism. Families are welcome whether they have a family dog or not.

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Will my family dog get public access rights?

Pet dogs will not have assistance dog status i.e. entry into shopping centres etc. You can find places that welcome dogs on the Dog Friendly website.

You may be interested in the Kennel Club’s Open for Dogs campaign http://www.kcdogfriendly.co.uk/ which is working to increase the number of places which welcome well mannered family dogs.

There is a current initiative by the Office of Disability issues (DWP) to bring stakeholders together to create a public access test that would be available for both owner-trainer assistance dog partnerships and those trained by non-Assistance Dogs International/International Guide Dog Federation organisations. Read more on the ADUK website.

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I don’t yet have a family dog. Do I need to get one before I attend the workshops?

Owning a family dog is not a requirement. We have designed workshops for both families who do not yet have a dog but are considering giving a home to one, as well as those families who already have a dog in the home.

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Will you supply a family dog for me?

We’re unable to supply a dog for you as each family will have different requirements and preferences and so will be suited to different dogs. The workshops will cover information on topics such as factors to consider when thinking about getting a family dog, what type of dog to look for, and the options for sourcing a dog. Find out more about the workshops here.

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How do I join the Family Dog Service?

For more information about our workshops contact the Family Dog team on 01295 759836 or [email protected]

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Is there a cost for joining the Family Dog Service?

As we are a charity, we ask for a minimum donation of £60 payable when your place has been confirmed and your joining information has been sent out. This covers all materials given, lunch and refreshments at each of the three workshops.

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Will I be able to bring my child along to the workshops?

Unfortunately the workshops are held in different regions and at different sites and we are not able to offer childcare. The workshops are designed to provide parents with the necessary information and experience to take home with them to introduce to the rest of the family. The majority of workshops are held during school hours to hopefully make arranging childcare easier.

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Will I be able to bring my family dog along to the workshops?

For a number of reasons, including not having the necessary facilities, we do not allow family dogs to attend workshops. We will provide dogs for practical elements where appropriate.

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Will I be able to purchase materials and access support without attending the workshops?

Due to the nature of the Family Dog Service, it is necessary for at least one parent to attend all three workshops.

Workshops will include a considerable amount of demonstrations, discussions and opportunities for practical dog handling, and so the support materials alone will not be sufficient to cover the Family Dog service.

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