dog-loving-community5Hilton Head Humane Association dogs in Canines for Service program

The Canines for Service program provides a service dog to approved veterans, helping empower those with disabilities to attain a high level of independence and improve their quality of life through these special service dogs.

The training to become a Canines for Service graduate takes 10 months to a year. During that time the dogs learn more than 90 commands that range from all levels, the easiest being the basic obedience skills.

Canines for Service partakes in a triple-win philosophy. It starts with how it acquires the dogs. Eighty-five percent of its service dogs in the training program are from local rescues and shelters. There are no dogs that are bred.

dog-loving-community6The second part of the triple-win philosophy is that military prisoners train the dogs. These dogs help rehabilitate the prisoners, which allows them to then give back to the community.

The final step is giving the service dog to a qualified military veteran where it will help them live out their everyday life in the most normal way possible.

When the canines graduate from the program and are given to the deserving veteran, they can do impressive commands like retrieving bottles from the fridge, help the veteran into bed and even do their laundry.

These well-trained dogs become more than just the vet's best friend. They become their lifeline that helps them live a better life.

After the dogs have completed their training they are valued at $40,000 and are giving to the veterans free of charge. All of the money donated to Canines for Service goes to help covering the needs to run the program.

Two former Hilton Head Humane Association dogs are currently in the Canines for Service program. Meshach and Uriah who are now know as Pino and Lori.

Only 21 dogs have graduated the program and are in place with veterans today. These dogs help the veterans out with everything, and most importantly, they makes them feel safe with they are out and about.

To contact the Hilton Head Humane Association at 843-681-8686.



Tara's in Fountain Center is hosting a Cut-A-Thon from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 6 to benefit the Hilton Head Island feral cat population. Haircuts for humans will be given free of charge with donations to Hilton Head Humane’s feral cat program encouraged. All donations will go directly to the program.

“This is our third year doing it,” hairstylist Tony Crosby said. “Last year we raised $3,200 and we hope to reach more than we did last year.”

The feral cat program captures feral cats, spays or neuters them, then releases them where they were captured. For more information on the Cut-A-Thon, contact Hilton Head Humane at 843-681-8686 or Crosby at 298-0325.