Thursday, August 25, 2011

Service Dogs Aid People with Disabilities

WASATCH, Utah -- These dogs don’t just fetch.
They turn on light switches, drag laundry baskets, pull wheelchairs and give autistic children the confidence to visit the dentist
But before Canine Companions for Independence dogs can fulfill their destiny of becoming service animals to people with disabilities, they need the right start in life. At 8 weeks old, the dogs go from a breeder to a carefully screened volunteer “puppy raiser,” said Melanie Dutcher, president of the national organization’s Utah chapter, Wasatch Companions.
“They are in an important developmental phase,” she said. “If handled properly, you get a confident and safe dog.”

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