Puppy Jake Foundation wrapped up the 2015 Iowa State Fair, reflecting on the wonderful experiences this year. Over twenty veterans expressed interest in applying for a professionally trained service dog and more than thirty people plan to attend upcoming Orientation Sessions to become foster familes.
The Training Team conducted NINE formal training classes at the Fair. Additionally, foster families spent time exploring the venue with their service dog in training on their personal time, and/or before and after shifts in the Booth. Great care was taken for the time the pups spent in the booth greeting and meeting everyone. Multiple breaks, water and kennel time was required for the canines~and humans too!
PJF is blessed with the high level of awareness of the mission to help US Servicemembers, suffering from injury in combat. Time and time again the volunteers heard, "Oh, here's Puppy Jake~they raise service dogs for veterans!" Presidential candidates, mascots, children, veterans, cheerleaders, special guests from Blazing Saddles and more, spent time with the pups, made donations, and chatted with volunteers.
After 11 days at the Fair, where PJF helped a lost boy, a man suffering a stroke and a break-in to the booth, PJF was thrilled to give away 78 stuffed dogs; 250 coloring books; 400 tattoos (on the first day); 114 PJF special blend coffee packs; 103 admission tickets, 1,250 business cards, 874 personalized dog trading cards; 83 t-shirts; 43 tugs toys (made by volunteers) and 2,400 brochures. The millions of calories, trips down the concourse, goats and cattle, sky gilder rides and pup treats added to the wonderful time. Iowa State Fair experience: PRICELESS.