Paws of Allegiance Fall 2021-
South-Mid Regional Updates
Community partnerships are a vital part of nonprofit organizations and the greater San Antonio community. Our connections not only reflect our motto, “Warriors Helping Warriors,” but also our willingness to lend a helping hand to our fellow man. Paws for Purple Hearts has joined forces with Cavender Cares for a common goal, to help improve the lives of American Heroes.
The Cavender name has been synonymous with generosity for 80 years and counting. Their dedication to improving their community echoes their motto “Confidence is Cavender.” From outfitting a deserving Warrior and his family with a brand new vehicle to providing matching donations for key fundraisers, the Cavender Auto Group is making a profound impact on those who have sacrificed so much for their country.
If you would like to help Paws for Purple Hearts in its mission to improve the lives of America’s Warriors facing mobility challenges and trauma-related conditions such as PTSD and/or TBI by providing the highest quality assistance dogs and canine-assisted therapeutic programs, please visit www.pawsforpurplehearts.org/donate.
What to Pack in your To-go Bag For your Pup
Texas weather can be unpredictable – summer time boasts temperatures akin to the surface of the sun, while in the previous year’s winter we experienced snow for a week. Everything in between can either be hot and humid, or chilly and freezing and sometimes you don’t know which one until you’ve already committed to going out and about. Our trainers are always prepared for whatever weather greets them when they’re traveling around the city; here’s just a couple of things you can make sure you have with you so you are ready for a wide variety of situations:
- Booties – to protect those dog paws on the hot asphalt or other surfaces such as sand on the beach or the desert.
- Collapsible water bowl/water – sometimes you get thirsty! You can clip this on your belt and take it anywhere so you are always ready to help your four-legged friend wet their whistle.
- Treats/food rewards – it is always a good idea to have tasty tidbits for training purposes, to help with general motivation, or just for bonding with your furry buddy.
- Dog first aid kit – you never know when you will need it!
- Poop bags – it happens…
- Raincoat – we don’t like to get rained on, and sometimes dogs don’t either.
Whether you’re taking Fido out for a relaxing neighborhood walk or hanging out in your in your favorite dog-friendly place, we recommend keeping these items in your to-go bag so you’re prepared for every situation that comes your way.
Frequently Used Service Dog Commands
While we train our service dogs-in-training to learn a wide variety of commands, some are more commonly used than others. Our more basic commands include: Leave It, Let’s Go, No, Wait, Stay. These commands are used daily in training and sessions to create a foundation for the dogs as they go through the 110+ commands they will ultimately learn at the end of their 2.5 years of training.
The two that are used the most are “Wait” and “Stay” and are utilized at any given time in training. Wait and Stay are used when being released from the kennels, waiting for a secondary command, or when a handler needs their service dog to stay put momentarily.
The “No” command is commonly used to let the service dog-in-training know they have performed the incorrect command or if they are behaving inappropriately. It allows the service dog-in-training to understand and correct themselves.
Lastly, the “Leave It” and “Let’s Go” commands are essential for field trips and outings. Leave It allows the handler to let the service dog-in-training know to leave that item, person or other animal alone or ignore it and tells them to keep their focus on the handler or the task at hand. Let’s Go lets them know that it is time to go or to keep moving forward.
Chapman’s Favorite Field Trips
When it comes to field trips, no one has more fun than our Service Dogs-in-training. Our canine friends spend a large portion of their time training going on field trips with their handlers and experiencing new things. However, it’s not just all work and no play. Some of these training trips turn into some of the most rewarding and exciting times for our furry friends. Chapman is no exception to having some favorite field trip venues while he’s training. Some of his favorite field trip locations have been when he gets to go to the pet store. He absolutely loves looking at the fish in the tanks and greeting all the smaller furry friends, like the bunnies and ferrets. To be honest, any field trip that consists of Chapman being allowed to greet everyone is his favorite because saying “Hello” in his big-hearted friendly way is his favorite thing to do. That’s why he often goes by the nickname “Happy Chappie,” because he just has so much love and adoration for everyone he meets.