Last Updated on August 9, 2019 by Luke Feldbrugge
Homes for Heroes real estate specialist, D’Ann Faught, and the Homes for Heroes Foundation presented a $5,000 grant to Hero Dogs Inc. to assist in training special service dogs who will care for American heroes. The organization is committed to serving disabled heroes because they believe their service dogs can improve the hero’s quality of life at no cost to the hero.
Helping Train Dogs to Serve Heroes
The Homes or Heroes Foundation and Homes for Heroes real estate specialist, D’Ann Faught, presented a $5,000 hero grant to Hero Dogs. The money will go toward funding the training programs that prepare these special dogs to care for their hero owner.
“I was proud to be part of this grant because training these dogs to care for their hero’s needs is important,” said Homes for Heroes real estate specialist, D’Ann Faught.
Hero Dogs Training Program
Hero Dogs Inc. is a nonprofit based out of Maryland who serves the greater Washington DC area by pairing disabled U.S. Military Veterans and first responders with trained support canines. The hero’s disability does not need to be connected to their service to qualify for a canine. These amazing support dogs are provided great care and go through a specific training program to improve the quality of life for their owner, and there is no cost for the hero.
Phase 1: Puppy Program
All dogs in the program are donated by breeders. A puppy transitions from the breeder to Hero Dogs between 8 – 12 weeks. After some initial preparation and evaluation by Hero Dogs staff, the puppy begins house, crate, leash, and basic command training. They are placed on a structured schedule of eating, sleeping, exercising, working, and playing.
A puppy raiser then takes care of the puppy for 14 – 16 months. Puppy raisers are responsible for teaching their puppies a foundation of basic skills for service dogs. Puppy raisers take their puppies everywhere they go in the community to expose them to environments they may encounter when working with their hero partners. Not all puppies make the cut because they need to meet certain criteria to enter the next phase of training. Qualified puppies then leave their puppy raiser homes and enter the second phase of training with professional trainers at Hero Dogs.
Phase 2: Advanced Training Program
The dogs work with the Hero Dogs training staff daily on the following skills:
- Open and close objects
- Retrieve specific objects
- Put objects into and taking out of containers
- Help with dressing and undressing
- Operate light switches and automatic doors
- Alert owner to specific
- Find specific person by name
- Navigate steps, curbs, and under footings
- Provide owner with balance when stepping
- Assist owner with rising from a fall
How You Can Get Involved
Simply visit Hero Dogs if you’re interested in supporting their mission because they could always use help with the following:
- Breeders of high-quality Labradors or Golden Retrievers, please consider donating a special puppy
- Become a puppy raiser or sitter
- Donate to Puppy Sponsorship or Puppy Scholarship
To learn more about specific eligibility requirements for a dog simply apply online.
How the Homes for Heroes Foundation Works
Homes for Heroes and their nonprofit private charitable foundation, Homes for Heroes Foundation, fuel a circle of giving. Homes for Heroes, Inc. donates a portion of its earnings to the Homes for Heroes Foundation. Every time a hero buys or sells a home using Homes for Heroes real estate specialists, they are helping heroes in need. The Foundation awards hero grants to local nonprofit charities serving heroes in need at the local, regional and national levels.
Please visit the Homes for Heroes Foundation to learn more or to make a donation to support heroes in need.