Assistance Dogs for Professionals in Counseling, the Classroom, Ministry, Hospitals, and Courthouses

In addition to providing Service Dogs directly for people with a disability, NEADS® also trains Assistance Dogs for partnership with teachers, therapists, those who perform religious ministry and those who work in courthouse and hospital settings. These canine assistants are matched with teachers or therapists that work with students who have mental or physical disabilities and ministers who seek to engage with their general community.

NEADS Assistance Dogs are placed with counseling professionals ranging from therapists to ministers, as well as with professionals in classroom, hospital, and courthouse facilities. The Assistance Dogs are owned by the individual handler, not by a school, business or religious institution. The primary handler is responsible for the care and costs associated with the dog, as well as the upkeep of the dog’s training. Assistance Dogs usually “work” during the day with their partner and then go home at night to be an “off-duty” family pet. There are so many things an Assistance Dog can do, and NEADS is happy to help teachers, therapists, courthouse and hospital employees, and ministers determine how to best utilize an Assistance Dog with their clients.

How Assistance Dogs Can Help

Assistance Dogs for the Classroom

NEADS Assistance Dogs for the Classroom are matched with full-time special education faculty. They are trained in specific tasks that teachers can incorporate into their classroom teaching. The training also ensures that they are always under the control of the handler and that each task and command is consistently and reliably performed. NEADS provides teachers with highly personalized, hands-on training so they can successfully use the tasks most appropriate for their specific situation.

The process to receive a NEADS Assistance Dog involves multiple steps. Start the process by taking our Prequalifying Questionnaire to find out if an Assistance Dog is right for you.

Take the Prequalifying Questionnaire here.

Assistance Dogs for the Hospital

Assistance Dogs for the Hospital are effective partners for hospital staff who are looking for a way to help alleviate the stress and trauma of patients and their families while in the hospital. The highly trained Assistance Dog is taught to remain calm and focused in many environments, including a hospital situation, which is often high-stress and highly emotional.

The process to receive a NEADS Assistance Dog involves multiple steps. Start the process by taking our Prequalifying Questionnaire to find out if an Assistance Dog is right for you.

Take the Prequalifying Questionnaire here.

Assistance Dogs for the Courthouse (Courthouse Facility Dogs)

Courthouse Facility Dogs assist crime victims, witnesses and others during the investigation and prosecution of crimes as well as other legal proceedings. They provide compassion and emotional support to everyone in the justice system. Courthouse Facility Dogs are utilized in such a way as to not disrupt legal proceedings or create legal issues. Courthouse Facility Dogs can provide a sense of normalcy during juvenile and family court proceedings, and can accompany vulnerable crime victims, including, children, rape victims, developmentally delayed adults, and the elderly during court proceedings. They can also provide emotional comfort to family members of homicide victims during the trial and sentencing of the offender.

The process to receive a NEADS Assistance Dog involves multiple steps. Start the process by taking our Prequalifying Questionnaire to find out if an Assistance Dog is right for you.

Take the Prequalifying Questionnaire here.

Ministers, Resource Officers, School Counselors, Therapists

Assistance Dogs for Counseling Professionals

Assistance Dogs for Counseling Professionals are placed with therapists, school counselors, ministers, or others specifically trained to help people in need. The dog accompanies the professional in his or her full-time duties, including assisting in counseling sessions, visiting those in hospitals, nursing homes or private residences, conducting worship services, and attending activities in the community.

The dogs have been specifically trained to help ease counseling and promote harmony. The presence of a friendly, soft, engaging animal often puts people at ease.

The process to receive a NEADS Assistance Dog involves multiple steps. Start the process by taking our Prequalifying Questionnaire to find out if an Assistance Dog is right for you.

Take the Prequalifying Questionnaire here.

Marcus - Franciscan Hospital Assistance Dog
tootsie-outside

NEADS Assistance Dogs in the News

NEADS Client Stephanie Smith with Assistance Dog Tootsie

WWLP-22’s Mass Appeal welcomed NEADS client Stephanie Smith with Assistance Dog Tootsie, and NEADS Manager of Communications, Audrey Trieschman, to share insights about NEADS programs. 

Kids Thrilled by Franciscan Hospital’s New Assistance Dog

by Meghan Ottolini, Boston Herald

Franciscan Children’s Hospital’s newest employee, Marcus, had an excellent first day on the job.

He did spend much of the afternoon yesterday gobbling treats out of the nurse manager’s hand. Marcus is a 20-month-old black lab who has been trained to act as a therapy dog for the pediatric patients.

“The kids knew he was coming and they were thrilled to visit him,” said Franciscan Children’s CEO Aimee Carew-Lyons. “There’s not enough of Marcus to go around.”

Franklin The Service Dog ‘Provides A Real Calm’ At Medfield School

by Lisa Mullins, WBUR

There’s a celebrity at Ralph Wheelock School in Medfield. He has his own mailbox, he gets extra recess time, and he’s Mr. Popularity.

His name is Franklin. He’s a 3-year-old golden retriever-yellow lab mix.