When was Puppy Jake Foundation started?
PJF was founded in February of 2013.
What specifically are some of the things service dogs do?
PJF service dogs are trained to assist with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and mobility impairments. The service dogs may be trained to anchor, chin, front, interrupt flashbacks and navigate crowds for those suffering from PTSD. For mobility impairments, the service dogs may be trained to turn on/off lights, open/close doors and drawers, pick up items and retrieve items.
Where do the puppies or dogs come from?
Puppies are purchased from reputable breeders and picked up around eight weeks of age. PJF requires that the parents of the puppies have passed appropriate health clearances for hips, elbows, eyes and heart. PJF also works with the ARL and rescue groups identify rescue dogs.
What breed of dogs do you use and why?
Puppy Jake Foundation trains Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers and German Shepherds. These three breeds are the right size for service dog work (not to big nor too small) and they are quite smart and easily trained. These dogs have wonderful temperaments and are loving and loyal.
How many dogs are in the program?
At the beginning of 2019, 24 service dogs have been placed with their wounded military veteran. There are currently 32 dogs in various stages of training. Between 10-12 dogs are scheduled to graduate in 2019. Approximately 8 more puppies will join the training program in 2019.
I’m a Veteran, how do I apply?
First, thank you for your service to our country. The first phase of the application process is found on the website. Complete the “Application of Interest” and the Application Review Committee will be in touch with the next steps. There is a mandatory two-week “Team Training” prior to receiving a service dog.
Is there a Waiting List and if so, how long is it?
The Waiting List varies from year to year. As more resources become available, more dogs may be added to the training program. Regardless, it still takes between 18-24 months to raise and train a service dog. In early 2019, there are at least two dozen applicants on the waiting list.
If I don’t get a dog right away, how long is my Application of Interest valid?
Applications of Interest form remain in consideration for 24 months, unless the applicant is notified differently.
As a Veteran, what happens if I’m accepted into the program?
Applicants selected to receive a Puppy Jake Foundation service dog will begin to work with trainers several months before the Team Training. Extensive follow-up training with Puppy Jake Foundation is required throughout the entire life of the Human-Canine team. PJF works with the veteran’s support system and providers.
Once I send in my Application of Interest, when will I hear if I get a service dog?
The Puppy Jake Foundation will notify you that your Application of Interest has been received. The Application Review Committee meets quarterly and reviews all new Applications of Interest at that time. You will then be notified of the status of your application.
I see there is a fee of $150 to apply, when do I send that in? Who do I make the check payable and where do I mail it?
The application fee of $150 is not necessary with the Application of Interest, or the first phase of the process. If you receive a complete Service Dog Application, you should include the $150 at that time. Checks are made payable to: Puppy Jake Foundation, PO Box 12220, Des Moines, IA 50312.
We have a pet dog at home, is that okay to still be considered for a service dog?
It is just fine to own a pet dog, or cat for that matter. During the home visit, the Trainers will want to be sure that the environment, including pets, are conducive for the service dog to work effectively.
On the Application you ask for references, why?
The references and support system for a graduate is very important. PJF will reach out to various individuals to discuss your situation and ability to care of the service dog.
I’m a Veteran but didn’t see action or serve on active duty, but I still need a service dog. Can you help?
The mission of Puppy Jake Foundation is to give priority to disabled veterans who have a combat related disability. Should resources be available, disabled veterans who have a service related disability would be considered.
Where may I find out financial information and policy information on PJF?
The current Annual Report, IRS 990, and Financials are found publically on website. Additionally, Puppy Jake Foundation has received the Better Business Bureau Charity Accreditation.
How much does a Veteran have to pay for a service dog?
Puppy Jake Foundation does NOT charge for a service dog. There is an application fee of $150 at the second phase of the application process.
Who pays for the care of the service dog once it is placed with a veteran?
Upon completion of Team Training, the veteran assumes the financial responsibility of the service dog.
Updated: April 2018