Could You become a ATD Tester/Observer?

You don't have to be a dog trainer or a dog show judge. If you have experience working with different dog breeds, if you can "speak dog," if you enjoy meeting and working with new people, then you may have what it takes to become a ATD Tester/Observer. Check out the website or call ATD to get more information. The sooner you apply, the sooner you can be the one making wishes come true!


Click here to Become A Tester/Observer or Call 877-843-7364

Tester/Observer Medical Benefit And Criteria

ATD is now making a medical benefit available to tester/observers and the test dogs, provided the test dog is owned or handled by the T/O and is or was a therapy dog registered with ATDThe T/O may apply for this benefit only if the T/O and/or the test dog suffers bodily injury from testing or observing applicants, regardless of whether the injury is caused by the dog or the handler being tested/observed. The benefit will cover only medical bills and costs not covered by the T/O's primary health insurance policy, Medicare or Medicaid and veterinary costs not covered by the test dog's insurance policy. The T/O and/or test dog is eligible for up to $5,000.00 per incident. Any medical or veterinary costs exceeding $5,000.00 are the sole responsibility of the T/O. The following is the criteria that will qualify the T/O and/or test dog to receive this medical benefit.

  1. The T/O must be a member in good standing, current on dues and renewal requirements including having passed the current year's T/O review. Renewals are due by January 1 or July 1 of each year. If the T/O has not timely paid their dues and an incident occurs after the due date, then the T/O will not be eligible for the benefit.
  2. The T/O and test dog must be performing the test or observation at the time of the incident. The T/O cannot be consulting, evaluating, advising or socializing with the team prior to or after testing.
  3. The ATD T/O and Test Guidelines must be strictly adhered to during the test or observation. There can be nothing implemented by the T/O that is NOT on the ATD test. Example: The T/O is not eligible for benefits if s/he is hugging the dog, pulling the dog's tail or stumbling into the handler to evaluate the dog's reaction.
  4. An incident report must be completed with all pertinent details and contact information of witnesses and submitted to the ATD corporate office. The request for payment of this benefit must be accompanied by proof of medical or veterinary expenses outstanding after being submitted to the T/O's primary insurer. If the T/O has paid any of the medical expenses, veterinary bills or co-pays on their own, then receipts of payment must be included.
  5. Notice of a potential request for benefits must be submitted to the ATD corporate office within seven calendar days of the incident and will be investigated and processed by the T/O committee. If the committee approves payment of benefit, the benefit will be paid either directly to the provider or to the T/O if the T/O has included receipts.

Examples of damages that are NOT covered by this benefit:

  1. Injuries sustained by the T/O's own negligence (such as slipping, falling, or twisting an ankle or a knee).
  2. Injuries suffered by the test dog if the test dog is at fault, meaning causing the incident.
  3. Lost wages or damage to or loss of property.
  4. Pain, suffering or mental anguish.
  5. Any psychological or mental health treatment resulting from alleged trauma suffered during a test or observation