Does your dog have
what is takes
to serve you?

Time and again, we have found the connection between canine and human to be strong – strong enough to be trained to assist in a meaningful way. In Handler/Owner Trained, the veteran comes to us with a pet dog between four months and three years old for training and they work through our service dog in training program. Just like the dogs working with our fosters, there is no guarantee the dog will become a service dog.

At the end of each phase, the veteran and dog will be tested – just like the dogs being fostered – to determine whether they can move to the next phase. We are committed to making sure a Handler/Owner team is successful.


We do charge for the Handler/Owner Trained Program because it is outside of our original program. It can cost more than $30,000 to train a service dog, and we understand that is not a fee that everyone can afford. Our program is significantly less, and for qualified veterans, we have financial assistance available. 

Dog Perfect (15 weeks)              $595
Phase 3 (5 months)                    $4,000
Phase 4 (5 months)                   $4,000
Phase 5 (5 months)                   $4,000

Total: $12,595*

*Financial assistance available for qualified veterans.

The Process

1) Complete Dog Perfect for Veterans

This is a 15-week course that takes the veteran and dog through basic obedience and skills that make a pet dog, well, perfect. At the end of the session, the dog and veteran will be tested to determine whether the dog can successfully move to the next step.

2) Jump in At Phase 3

If the veteran and dog are determined to be a good match to become a service dog in training, they begin Phase 3 of our program with other dogs at the same level. In this program, the team works to strengthen the obedience skills as well as work towards their Canine Good Citizen (CGC) certificate. This is a five-month process.

3) Phase 4

Upon completion of Phase 3, the dog and veteran then move to Phase 4, where there is continued emphasis on working together as a team in public, as well as beginning to work on service skills. This, too, is a five-month process.

4) Phase 5

This is where the finishing touches are completed. You’ll work with other veterans and their dogs to finalize the skills and relationship building that makes for successful service dog teams.