Articles/Featured Stories

An archive of select articles and media coverage featuring NEADS, NEADS clients, and NEADS staff.

Service dogs take Duck Tour through Boston

Rob Pelaez, Boston Herald.

NEADS World Class Service Dogs celebrated Boston Duck Tours’ philanthropic initiative, ‘Quack-Quack, Give Back!” on Sunday with ambassadors and partners taking a private tour ride through the city.

The two organizations celebrated their 12-year partnership a week after Duck Tours’ 2024 season kicked off with the tour ride for service dogs and their handlers. For pooches too young for the tour, there was and a training course that included basic obedience, good manners and socialization, NEADS officials said.

Read the full story here.

Telegram & Gazette: Assistance Dog J.D. brightens every day at this Central Mass. high school

Jeff A. Chamer, Worcester Telegram & Gazette: One of Tantasqua Regional Senior High School's most popular staff members is known for his ability to provide a comforting pres­ence in times of distress - and for tak­ing treats when he's a good boy.

It's J.D., a 5-year-old black lab who regularly walks around the school building and visits classrooms with assistant principal Beth Johnson, his owner and handler.

"It has been a giant love affair be­tween every staff member and student that J.D. has ever met," Johnson said. "He makes a world of difference for some kids - he really turns their day around and, for a lot of kids, he is the reason that they come to school or can get through the whole school day."

Whether it's the first thing in the morning as students arrive, a random walk through the building or lunchroom, or popping into counseling ses­sions to help students, Johnson has been sure to make J.D. as accessible to students as possible throughout the day.

One of J.D.'s most frequent visitors -and, Johnson said, the president of his fan club - is Alexis Buteau, a senior. Buteau said she typically makes it a point to see J.D. at least once per school day.

"He's very comforting and he knows all of these adorable tricks," Buteau said. Continue reading...

Boston Herald: Anything is paw-sible

Boston Herald Staff: A pawsitively fun event all for a good cause returned on Sunday, as NEADS World Class Service Dogs hosted its Pulling 4 Paws Truck Pull to support its array of Service Dog programs.

The Pulling 4 Paws Truck Pull at Worcester’s Polar Park was back after a three-year hiatus. See photos here.

Worcester Pulse Magazine: NEADS

LuAnn Thibodeau: Perhaps you have heard of NEADS before, or have driven by their location in Princeton and seen the sign and wondered what NEADS is. Well, this will help you to learn a bit more about NEADS and their mission...  I got to see it first hand and I am nothing but completely amazed. These folks and the dogs are awesome, delightful, wonderful, and so much more.

Read the full story here.

Wicked Local: Travels with a service dog: Massachusetts residents share their stories, challenges

Margaret Smith: Whether going by train, plane or bus, Ellen Leigh of Arlington has covered many miles with Ricky, her affable black Labrador retriever, at her side. "I've had him for over eight years. He's extremely well trained," said Leigh. Leigh and Ricky teamed up through NEADS, a Princeton-based nonprofit organization that provides and trains service dogs.

"He is trained to do things to help me cope with my disability," said Leigh. "He opens doors. He picks things up that drop. He retrieves things I need, and brings them to me, takes off my jacket. He can bark to get attention. He can fetch the phone, all kinds of things."

Read the full article here.

Redemption Rock News: NEADS – the Local Nonprofit That Has A Nationwide Impact on Veterans

By Caitlin V. Reidy. Manager of Client Services, Katie Hanna, is interviewed for this Veterans Day article. Original article can be found here.

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Boston Herald: Boston Duck Boats For The Dogs

BOSTON, MA.- Service dogs in training and their volunteer raisers arrive for a duck tour as NEADS World Class Service Dogs and Boston Duck Tours celebrate their 10-year partnership with a duck tour for NEADS service dogs, dogs in training, service dog trainers and volunteers on April 24, 2022 in Boston, MA. Read the article and see photos here. (Photos by Amanda Sabga/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)

Hartford Courant: ASAP: 30 adorable Lab puppies need Connecticut volunteers to start them on their journey to be service dogs

Susan Dunne | Hartford Courant: The eight-week-old puppies from NEADS World Class Service Dogs may look like average frisky Labrador retrievers, but these cuties have an important purpose. The dogs will have careers helping people with physical, neurological and psychological special needs go through their day-to-day lives. They need proper training, however. The Massachusetts-based NEADS is expanding and needs volunteer puppy raisers as soon as possible. The nonprofit wants to recruit Connecticut residents to take the playful pups home and devote 12 to 16 months to turn them into disciplined companion animals...

Full story on

The Landmark: NEADS dog making lives better at WSU

Ken Cleveland | The Landmark: Article features NEADS client Kevin Fenlon and Assistance Dog MK and the work they do in the counseling services office at Worcester State University. Read the article here.

Military Families Magazine: Rapid fire

Melissa M. Stewart | Military Families Magazine: Q&A with a veteran and his best friend. Despite hearing aids and a cochlear implant, Army veteran Stephen Hood's hearing was rapidly deteriorating, making daily tasks challenging and dangerous for the retired Chicago police officer. Fortunately, his outlook on life turned around when he found NEADS World Class Service Dogs. The nonprofit connected him with Charlotte, the highly trained working dog who now never leaves his side.

Read the full article here.

Worcester Business Journal: Four-legged battle buddies: NEADS service dogs help veterans

Sloan M. Perron, Worcester Business Journal, interviews NEADS client Cliff Comptois, NEADS Trainer Tyler Gribi, and NEADS Veterans Services Representative, Katie Hanna. Read the article here.

Telegram & Gazette: NEADS dogs give girls at Girls Inc. confidence boost for reading aloud

Christine Peterson, Telegram & Gazette: WORCESTER — NEADS dogs are always willing to lend a helping paw, or in this case, their adorable, floppy ears to help girls improve their reading skills.

Two highly-trained NEADS dogs visited Girls Inc. on Providence Street to kick off the organization's one-of-a-kind summer reading initiative Thursday.

The dogs met with girls in second and third grades from 10 to 11 a.m. to serve as an audience while the girls practiced reading out loud. Full story

The Landmark: Puppies highlight NEADS mission

Ken Cleveland, The Landmark ( attended a recent media day at NEADS. He writes, "NEADS held an event ostensibly to provide information about its new breeding facility being built in Sterling down the road from the NEADS site in Princeton. But once Tillie’s eight puppies, 7-week-old bundles of energy, were set loose into their playground area, all eyes were on the yellow Labrador Retrievers. Continue reading...


Telegram & Gazette: NEADS unveils new project with lab pups

Marco Cartolano, Telegram & Gazette: A litter of eight yellow Labrador retriever puppies scurried around in the play area Thursday at NEADS World Class Service Dogs' training campus.

The puppies played games such as tug of war and greeted their visitors and trainers. Soon, they will start their path to becoming service dogs.

continue reading...

Vermont Biz: Waterbury hotel included in launch of ‘Red Vest Accessible’ as disability-friendly

The Best Western Plus Waterbury-Stowe of Waterbury has received the Red Vest Accessible designation in recognition of its efforts to offer a welcoming, accessible facility for those with a disability, its commitment to public access rights for legitimate Service Dog teams as defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and its ability to demonstrate a thorough knowledge of ADA regulations. The designation was presented by NEADS World Class Service Dogs, a leading, nationally recognized Service Dog organization. Continue reading...