Did you know dogs have special powers? PawPads (Pawsitive Perspectives Assistance Dogs) is a highly reviewed and award-winning nonprofit who recognize the healing powers of dogs.
Their two-fold mission is to enrich the lives of people with disabilities by providing them with exceptionally skilled assistance dogs and to utilize the power of the human-canine bond as a therapeutic, educational, healing tool. Under the leadership of Linda Ball, Founder and Executive Director, PawPads’ volunteers and staff use positive reinforcement to train canine assistants to help people living with disabilities lead more independent, self-reliant, and fulfilling lives.
In addition to helping people with disabilities, PawPads offers a variety of training programs in which community volunteers, veterans, inmates, and at-risk-youth have the opportunity to help raise and train canines for placement.
PawPads partners with correctional facilities to raise and train Assistance Dogs. Over a period of 18-24 months, eligible inmates teach dogs up to 90 commands to prepare them to assist their future recipients. Through this experience, inmates develop life skills such as emotional and social competence, leadership and communication skills, work ethic, increased levels of responsibility, empathy, and emotional regulation. Prison Road Puppies are socialized in public settings by volunteer correctional staff known as “Puppy Parole Officers.”
The Dogs who come when called – for the Soldiers who went when asked…©. As a proud community partner, PawPads works with the Real Warriors Campaign to assist veterans who are transitioning to civilian life. Believing in the healing power of the canine-human bond, dogs in training live with and are cared for by veterans who, in turn, learn valuable job and interpersonal skills.
“Project YES!” (Youth Empowerment Services) reflects PawPads’ positive training methods and their desire to help “youth-at-risk” and individuals with disabilities share in the challenges of facing our world today. In a school setting, at-risk youth learn to train service dogs while developing valuable life skills. Best of all, these young people experience unconditional love and the power of giving back to their community.
Through a partnership with a local school in Burnsville, MN, PawPADs’ dogs visit the school each week with volunteers. The dogs are able to practice their skills and social behaviors, while students also learn appropriate behaviors, practice social skills, and gain confidence. Everyone is a winner!
You can learn more about PawPads by visiting their website and Facebook page. As with all nonprofits, PawPADs relies on the generosity of donors and volunteers to continue the great work they are doing in the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. Because of PawPads’ commitment to ethical practices, accountability, and transparency, 4Knines is proud to support the PawPads’ mission. We hope you will consider donating through a direct donation or by setting your Amazon Smile account to donate a percentage of each purchase to benefit PawPads.