As of August 25, 2013, the mission for Alaska Assistance Dogs (AAD) was changed by the Board of Directors to read: “This corporation is organized to engage in charitable and educational activities connected to service dogs for Alaskans with special needs, and specifically to assist individuals interested in obtaining a service dog by providing advice, counsel and referral to professionally-trained service dog trainers.
AAD’s design over the years in its service dog and therapeutic programs has been to use the trust and unconditional love of dogs to heal hearts and minds. But, for service dogs there is a great deal more involved in creating a professionally trained service dog team. The founders retired from active service dog training as of December 31, 2013, but remain fully dedicated to seeing that service dog teams are professionally trained. Discussions on this website will cover proper training for basic obedience, public behavior, appropriate breed and size choices, what to look for in a professional trainer, federal and state laws, agencies in Alaska that can help with funding, housing laws regarding service dogs, and who to go to when not treated properly while in a business with a service dog or other public places.
- All trainers for Alaska Assistance Dogs (AAD) have been trained by Dr. Bonnie Bergin at Bergin University of Canine Studies (BUCS) in Santa Rosa, California. Dr. Bergin is the founder of the service dog concept. BUCS is a fully accredited California university.
- Candidate Member of Assistance Dogs International, Inc., the worldwide coalition of nonprofit programs that specialize in training service dogs.
- AAD had an Alaska Licensed Therapist (LPC) on staff directing therapeutic service dog training programs.
- Over it’s 13 years, AAD successfully trained, placed and followed to retirement dozens of service dogs.
- AAD specializes in therapeutic service dog training programs for children and teens.