The Four Paws and a Wake Up Service Dog Application and Matching Process
Our Service Dog Program
Service Dogs for Veterans who have a permanent service-connected disability for which Veterans Administration has documented related to mobility, service-related post-traumatic stress and/or traumatic brain injury
Service Dogs for individuals with mobility disabilities (limited availability)
Please note that Four Paws and a Wake Up does not train seizure alert dogs, guide dogs for the blind, diabetes alert dogs, dogs for people with Alzheimer's, emotional support, or psychiatric dogs for non-Veterans. Four Paws and a Wake Up does not train dogs that are already owned by individuals. Contact Assistance Dogs International for information about other organizations who may be able to help.
Cost of Obtaining a Service Dog
Many people ask us about the cost of obtaining a Service Dog. Thanks to generous donors and funding from grants, there is no charge for clients who are eligible for our services for receiving a Service Dog. Clients will need to pay for annual dog supplies such as food and veterinary services that can average $1,000-$2,000 a year.
Four Paws and a Wake Up-NC
Mailing: PO Box 12544 Wilmington NC 28405
Tax ID 84-2287904
OAT Classes and Fees
The dog being used for this program should have basic obedience which includes: sit, down, walk on loose leash, leave-it and come when called.
The dog must be at least 6-months of age and with the owner for at least 6 months.
Before beginning our classes, each person must apply and participate in a consultation with a staff member of Four Paws and a Wake Up. The person must have a documented disability as defined by the American with Disability Act Title II regulations (ADA) (https://www.ada.gov/regs2010/titleII_2010/titleII_2010_regulations.pdf).
Fee: Included with Application
Prior to beginning our classes, we meet with the client and their spouse or significant other to talk about the needs of the client and the training.
This meeting helps to ensure clients have an understanding of the commitment to the training and expectations for training. Following this meeting a training agreement is sent to the client.
OAT Level 1
Building on basic obedience skills, this class will focus on positioning, commands and foundational skills needed for service dog work, and beginning outings. It is required for all participants.
Participants will learn how to properly socialize their dog in training, how to deal with fear issues, how to keep a training log, preparatory training skills for retrieving objects and foundational behaviors for service dogs, accompanied outings and completion of the AKC Canine Good Citizen evaluation.
If successful, at the conclusion of this level, a team will receive an identification for their dog and a service dog in training vest.
OAT Level 2
This module will focus on intermediate commands, behaviors, and skills including simple retrieval of objects, increase the criteria of our foundation behaviors accompanied (with Four Paws Trainer) and unaccompanied (without Four Paws Trainer) outings of increasing difficulty, and review of access laws both state and federal. Outings will be including dining out at a casual restaurant, and a short grocery shopping experience.
This level is required for all participants.
OAT Level 3
Fee: $1,500 to $2,400
This module is customized for each individual and will focus on more specific commands and skills depending on the person's disability. It will include advanced obedience, skills training, accompanied and unaccompanied outings. An evaluation of commands and skills, the AKC Urban Canines Good Citizen evaluation and a Public Access Test will conclude the training.
Package 1- Designed for individuals with post-traumatic stress, panic, and anxiety disorders.
Package 2- Designed for individuals with basic balance, mobility, and back issues that could include the use of a cane or harnessed dog.
Package 3 - Designed for individuals with advanced mobility issues using a manual or power wheelchair.
Consultation with a trainer by telephone. Up to 4 follow-ups in the first 2 months after completion of successful certification after which a fee of $50 per consultation will be charged.
OAT Private Training Session
Fee: $150 per hour
This is a one-hour scheduled training session for clients with a trainer to problem-solve or teach a new skill.
OAT Re-assessment: Every Other Year
This is a scheduled assessment of skills and public access with the person and their dog. Successful results will provide the person and their dog with a certification renewal letter attesting to the completion of the training and successful evaluation and updated service dog identification. This is a mandatory assessment of any Owner-Assisted Service Dog Team that completed the Owner-Assisted Training program of Four Paws and a Wake Up.
OAT Important Information
Service Dog Assessment
Included in Curriculum fees
This is a scheduled assessment of skills and public access with the person and their dog. Successful results will provide the person and their dog with a certification letter attesting to the completion of the training and successful evaluation, a service dog identification card, and a service dog tag for the vest
This level is only offered to individuals completing the Owner-Assisted Training program of Four Paws and a Wake Up.
It takes time, patience, and repetition to train a service dog.
Each Owner Assisted Training team is expected to train apart from the scheduled class time. If you do not work with your dog, it shows, and the dog will not progress in its’ level of training.
The best way to practice training is to include training in your everyday life. For example, when getting ready in the morning, ask the dog to sit and down three times. Repeat again at different times throughout the day.
A parent or partner may assist with the training at no additional cost.
Four Paws and a Wake Up believes the handler of the dog must be the person with the disability.
Not every dog is cut out for the job. Some dogs that begin training will not complete the Owner Assisted Training.
Additional costs to the owner will include liability insurance, equipment, various levels of dog treats for the dog, and meals when on some accompanied outings.
Training fees are non-refundable.
Four Paws and a Wake Up reserves the right to not accept an applicant and/or the dog presented for training.
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