We have a puppy we already selected for our child. Can you help train it?
The short answer is no. Here's why:
The washout rate (pups who do not make it through training) for experienced trainers averages around 25%. For owner trained service dogs or dogs that are specifically trained for an individual from birth to graduation averages over 50%.
During the training process, each of our pups get extensive obedience training. Through our fostering process, that training is generalized to many different environments. Each of our fosters has a special niche that their training focuses on. When a pup is in one home throughout their training they will not get exposure to all of the experiences our foster trainers can provide. Each of our pups also goes through at least two cycles (2-3 months/cycle) in a school or classroom environment. This is crucial in the training of a service dog for youth and impossible to provide when owner or home trained with support.
As a service and professional therapy dog agency we have alternative "careers" for the pups who do not make the cut to become service dogs. When you are owner/home training, you should have a plan in place on what you will do in case your pups doesn't make the cut (see #1).
Paws 4 Autism is a grassroots agency that is 100% volunteer driven. At this time we just do not have the resources or staff to train dogs/pets outside of our programs.
OMG That's alot of money that I cant afford. Do you help fund raise?
Unlike other agencies, with Paws 4 Autism it is not about the cash. If you can find ways to save us money, you get the credits for that. This is also how we stay 100% volunteer---our families pitch in and work so that we do not have a payroll.
Paws 4 Autism has two large events as well as several smaller fundraisers throughout the year. The more you help either with organizing/working the event or help bring attendees, the more credits you receive on your account.
Not a single Paws 4 Autism family has raised the full amount in cash. Most work for at least half of the fundraising goal. Two of our families raised less than $1000 cash. It can be done.
What breeds of dogs do you train? Would you consider a different breed for our family?
All of our pups in training (and graduates) are STANDARD POODLES (aka SPOOS)
We chose spoos because they are considered among the most hypoallergenic breeds available. Most of the families we work with has a family member with allergy needs. Other agencies either charge a premium or make you jump through hoops to get a hypoallergenic service dog. With Paws 4 Autism it is included.
We have cooperative agreements with several school districts in the Kansas City Metro. Because our pups are considered hypoallergenic, we are able to work with more classrooms and students during the training process.
Autism kiddos are extremely sensory oriented. They love the differences in textures of the spoo coat (ears, top knot, body, tail). Also, most HAT picking shedding fur off their bodies/faces and out of their food!