Planet Dog Donates $60,000 To Service, Therapy, Police Dog Programs
In an out-of-this-world show of support for their consumers, Planet Dog, designer and developer of those innovative, superior quality and award-winning pooch products proves they really are top dog when it comes to giving back. In fact, two percent of every Planet Dog purchase goes straight to the organization’s charitable arm. The Planet Dog Foundation (PDF) whose mantra of supporting “working dogs helping people in need” has translated into much-needed funding for dog service programs throughout the United States. To date, PDF has donated over $1 million to worthy organizations, with this year’s gift of $60,000 being shared among 12 groups that provide not only service dog, therapy dog, police dog, and K-9 search and rescue programs but also support to kids and adults in need.
Recipients receiving a share of this year’s grant include:
America’s Vet Dogs in Smithtown, New York train and place support dogs for disabled veterans through their Prison Puppy Program. Inmates partner with local volunteers to train the pooches and the result is a win-win in terms of quality of life for the veteran and inmate alike.
Assistance Dogs of the West in Santa Fe, New Mexico teaches students to train service dogs and places the pooches with people suffering from physical, psychological and developmental disabilities. The PDF grant will specifically fund their work with Court House Dogs who support victims of violence.
Canine Therapy Corps in Chicago, Illinois develops and operates interactive animal-assisted therapy programs for physical and psycho-social rehabilitation that includes kids with autism, individuals in substance abuse programs, kids and teens suffering from abuse or neglect as well as those recovering from accidents or illness.
Embrace A Vet of Harpswell, Maine provides support to state veterans and their families living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or traumatic brain injury. The PDF grant will fund their Paws for Peace program, placing 12 dogs (many from shelters) into training designed to help mitigate the symptoms of PTSD for veterans.
A Fair Shake for Youth, Inc. is based in New York City and uses therapy dogs to help vulnerable, under-served young people to develop and strive for a better future. The PDF grant will allow them to partner with 12 schools and reach 200 youth in the city’s poorest communities, teaching them social and practical skills to excel in life.
The Good Dog Foundation out of New York City is a leader in developing best practices in therapy dog service including training certification and quality controls. Their dog teams visit hospitals, trauma centers, schools, nursing homes and disaster sites, helping those impacted by crisis to cope.
Guiding Eyes for the Blind of Yorktown Heights, New York is an internationally accredited non-profit guide dog school that will use the PDF grant to support their Kennel Enrichment Program that delivers enhanced stimulation and outlets for guide dogs undergoing rigorous training to expend some of their pent up energy.
OccuPaws Guide Dog Association in Madison, Wisconsin places guide dogs with visually impaired residents at no cost to the individual. Dogs begin their training in the local correctional institution, and then undergo specialized training with OccuPaws trainers. The PDF grant will help fund the training of dogs and purchase supplies for the prison program.
The Other Paw from Fairbanks, Alaska provides courses to volunteers and their pets interested in becoming Pet Partner therapy dog teams. The teams support youth in residential homes, correctional facilities, homeless shelters, and other residential and institutional settings. Funding from PDF will offset the costs to certify 10 more dogs to serve the greater Fairbanks region.
Penn Vet Working Dog Center of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is part of the local university’s school of veterinary medicine and is a national research and development center for detection dogs trained to assist in national security and finding victims of disasters. The PDF grant supports the training of female Lab, Punches, who is named in honor of a victim of 9/11.She will be trained to detect explosives, explosives residue, and post-blast evidence.
Southeastern Guide Dogs based in Palmetto, Florida provides guide dogs for people with visual impairments, and the PDF grant will support their Paws for Patriots program that trains approximately 100 Guide Dogs, Service Dogs and Facility Therapy Dogs each year to work specifically with veterans.
Youth United for Survival in Hartford, Connecticut helps youth to develop healthy mechanisms to deal with the challenges of poverty, unstable family life, high violent crime rates, and trauma. The PDF grant will support a year of classes for 150 at-risk youth in their Buddy Project. The project teaches students how to train homeless dogs using positive training methods to increase the dog’s adoptability, while offering real life skills in an environment of compassion, responsibility, patience and success.
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