Veterans are carefully matched with their service dog, and prior to being permanently paired up they must a complete comprehensive 52-week program under the supervision of professional trainers and a mental health clinical practitioner. The compassion Service dogs provide these veterans with renewed purpose, confidence & unconditional love and support, and as with the ASD graduates, the impact on the lives of those who are ultimately paired up is truly amazing to see.
So once again we thank each and every one of you who has supported Kiz4Kids and Autism Support Dogs, and we hope that you know your support truly continues to change the lives of persons who need our help. To that end, we hope you enjoy reading this story written from the point of view of one of our puppies.
Eva & Family
Training & partnership.
Every day during my training, I put on my working vest. I don’t know what it says, but people always smiled and talked with my human, so it must say “good dog” or something. Anyway, I learned how to help people. It was a lot to remember at first. I had to watch my handler to see when he felt scared, and then I had to get his attention quickly. I know if I didn’t stop him, he would just get more and more afraid. At night, I slept at the end of his bed, and he taught me to wake him up when he screamed in the night.
It took a lot of time for me to learn all of the things I have to know. It is important that I learned my jobs well because most of them are things I have to do without being asked. I had to learn the smell of a human who is anxious and make it stop. That is a big job for a little dog like me.
After a long time, and when I finished learning, I had to take an exam. It was a big test to make sure I was ready. I know I passed because I got a new working vest, and some cookies. And then, I got my forever human.
My human is a Veteran. She is really nice and takes me everywhere she goes. I watch over her all the time, and at night I sleep close to her, so I can feel her dreams. Sometimes she needs me to turn the lights on and wake her up, so she stops crying. Sometimes I have to go find her under the bed.
When we are out together, I watch over her and stay close. When we come home, she sends me into her house to check that we can come in and relax. She doesn’t have to watch for scary things as much because that is what I do for her now. She sleeps, and I guard her.
Just so you know, that if some of us who don’t graduate from ASD program, your support is not wasted, we go on to enrich lives of many beyond your imaginations.