Therapy dogs teams are an integral component of Independence Service Dogs Foundation. Registered therapy dog teams are trained to bring physical and emotional benefits to humans thru the interaction of dog and handler. The requirements to become a registered Independence Service Dogs Foundation team are designed to ensure that the teams are prepared, trained, and educated. In addition, our dogs are properly screened for each facility they visit. Typically, therapy dog teams visit children's reading programs, nursing homes, hospitals, teen crisis centers and schools.

· What type of dogs are used?

Independence Service Dogs utilizes all breeds of dogs following successful completion of their training requirements. Some of our dogs may have pedigrees, while others may have been adopted from local shelters or are rescue dogs.

· What are the requirements for Independence Service Dogs?

We require therapy dog teams to take a 10 class course thru OC Service Dogs to learn proper leash technique and how to read their dog's body language.  To volunteer with Independence Service Dogs all dogs must be tested and evaluated by a certified Indpendence Service Dogs evaluator. A dog must be a minimum of one (1) year of age and have a sound temperament.  Testing will include an evaluation of the dog’s behavior around people and loud or unusual noises associated with the use of various types of service equipment (wheelchairs, crutches, etc.).  

Independence Service Dog teams are required to renew their registration every year, Our annual review ensures the dogs are healthy and enjoying their work (crucial to their welfare) and their handlers are prepared for situations that might arise on a visit (crucial for clients’ safety & staff members’ trust).  We also require each team to be finger printed for a background check.

· What are the health requirements?

We require an annual updated Health Record Form to be completed and signed by a licensed veterinarian yearly.  Dogs must be in good health with no injuries in order to volunteer in selected location.

· What are the benefits if I volunteer with Independence Service Dogs?

  • While on volunteer visits, you and your pet have insurance coverage

  • You will have access to tools to help you find places and opportunities to visit

  • You will receive an ID badge with a picture of you and your dog for you to wear while visiting

  • You will receive a shirt for yourself and a bandana for your dog to wear during visits.

· How is the organization funded?

Independence Service Dogs Foundation is a non-profit organization supported by service contracts, grants and public and private donations.

· How is the organization managed?

A Board of Directors governs the organization.

· How to obtain more information?

Our mailing address is: 

Independence Service Dogs Foundation                                                                                      13217 Jamboree Road #116                                                                                                      Tustin, CA 92782-9158                                                                                                                Tel:  800-684-0501