Generous Donors Help Increase Dogs Available to Virginia’s Warriors

 In Facility Dogs, National, Service Dogs, Training

Training Starts Early

Did you know that the cost of training a service dog can be greater than $30,000 and that we do not charge the Veterans who receive a dog from us anything?  We are honored to provide this service to those who have sacrificed so much for us. Our mission would not be possible without the generosity of our donors.  We have quite a unique story to share with you about how we received the newest service dog trainee, Marcie ( #pphMarcie ) here at our Virginia site.

Roughly a year ago, we were approached by a generous donor who wanted to donate and cover the cost of a puppy!  This would include all of the costs associated with the puppy such as vaccines, training equipment, food, and so much more.  It was specified that she wanted to name a golden retriever puppy after herself because of her love for the breed.  She had had them as pets and loved their temperaments.  Unfortunately, we did not have a female Golden Retriever lined up to join our program at that time.

Fast forward to current day

This summer, a year later, we received another generous donation…  a female Golden Retriever puppy from Emerson Dogs!  They donated the cost of purchasing a puppy from a member of our network top-quality breeders.  As a result, Marcie, an energetic, highly intelligent and adorable puppy, arrived at our Virginia site a few weeks ago to begin her training as a service dog for a Warrior in need.  She will continue her preparatory adventure at our site for approximately two and a half years, learning over 100 commands that will help Warriors facing mobility and/or trauma-related challenges.  She will also participate in our Canine-Assisted Warrior Therapy sessions, which help reduce the symptoms of trauma-related conditions caused by post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injuries.

Marcie’s time with us will culminate with her being matched with a Warrior “client” who will graduate with her after completing a two-week training course where the two will bond and learn to operate as an effective team.  In this way little Marcie will directly improve the life of an American Warrior!  Like us on Facebook to follow little Marcie’s training!

Thank You

We want to extend a special thank you to all who give and help our program.  Our service dog and therapeutic programs continue to grow thanks to the generosity of our donors, for which we are very grateful.  We also are extremely proud of our dedicated volunteers, who help us get the job done, given selflessly of their own valuable time in a variety of ways to support our mission.   We now have eight service dogs in training who participate in our Canine-Assisted Warrior Therapy sessions and other helpful activities, and we are increasing our operations constantly.  Stay tuned for more exciting news soon!

Marcie and all our pups start training early
Pups like Marcie begin their training as soon as we get them to our sites!
Commands start early for Service Dogs
Marcie is already learning to pose in her vest.
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