Motivation and support come in many forms, including a cold nose and a warm heart. Our Kids welcomes its newest staff member, Canine Companions for Independence Facility Dog Desiree IV. Desiree will assist handler Lori Littrell, nurse practitioner, during her work with children receiving forensic medical evaluations.
Since 1975, Canine Companions has bred, raised and expertly trained assistance dogs in over 40 commands designed to assist people with disabilities or to motivate and inspire clients with special needs. Desiree can pull toy wagons, push drawers closed and retrieve all kinds of items. She has 13 specific commands that allow her to interact with patients in a calm and appropriate way.*
Founded in 1987, Our Kids provides expert medical evaluations and crisis counseling in response to concerns of child sexual abuse. With 65 years of combined experience, Our Kids staff have evaluated over 24,000 children. Our Kids also seeks to increase community awareness, conduct research and offer education and training about child maltreatment. Our Kids clinical staff are on call for emergencies 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. Desiree’s presence helps bring comfort and reassurance to the children and families served.
About Canine Companions for Independence
For more than 40 years, Canine Companions for Independence has been enhancing the lives of people with disabilities by training and placing more than 5,000 assistance dogs with program graduates, including more than 140 dogs with military veterans and more than 1,500 dogs with children. The estimated cost of a highly trained Canine Companions facility dog like Desiree and all follow up support is $50,000; however, each facility dog is provided at no cost. Canine Companions depends on the support of tens of thousands of donors and volunteers to match our facility with an assistance dog like Desiree entirely free of charge.
Canine Companions for Independence provides highly trained assistance dogs to children and adults with disabilities. Established in 1975, Canine Companions has six regional training centers across the country. Canine Companions is recognized worldwide for the excellence of its dogs, and the quality and longevity of the matches it makes between dogs and people. For more information, visit www.cci.org or call 1-800-572-BARK.
If you have any questions about Desi or would like to do a story on the important work she’s doing at Our Kids, please contact Jill Martindale at firstname.lastname@example.org or (615) 341-4920.