Monday, October 20, 2014

Homes for Heroes Meets Hounds 4 Heroes!

So, Thursday of last week, we had a treat at the office. Eight adorable German Shepherd puppies to play with! We also met some amazing women, Kimberly Terell and Dauvida Lykins of Hounds 4 Heroes.


homes for heroes fort stewart
 
Hounds 4 Heroes is a non-profit organization based here in Hinesville that donates service dogs to veterans and soldiers suffering from PTSD, those with diabetes, kids and adults with autism, etc. Kimberley, who has a degree in Animal Psychology, started the organization when she researched a service dog for her son. The wait list was seven years (yep, you read that right, seven years!) and the total cost around 20k. Kimberley decided to take on the massive project of adopting and purchasing puppies to train herself as service animals for those in need. Never wanting cost to come between a dog and a person in need, Kimberly vowed to never charge a client for their animal.

discounts for miliary buyers

An admirable and generous goal, but this means everything for these adorable and well-trained animals comes out of Kimberley's pockets. So, our team is sponsoring a litter! (we're calling them Lisa's Litter after my team-leader). Each dog already has someone in need waiting for them, so we'll get to sit in on a few training sessions as well as meet some of the new owners.

hounds 4 heroes program hinesville

The training process for the dogs is extensive. They begin their conditioning from day one (for example, Kimberley trains her dogs to sniff out high and low blood sugar, useful for diabetics). They're placed with their new families early as well; Kim tells us dogs can pick up negative habits from their litter that can interfere with their training. Just a few of the amazing ways the dogs help their humans:

**They can wake someone having a nightmare. If the person is a thrasher, the dog will climb on top of them and lick their face to wake them up.

**Typically, those suffering from PTSD don't like for anyone to walk up on them and surprise them; Kim's service dogs will heel the opposite way (on the right instead of the left and facing the approaching person instead of forward) in order to alert their human that someone's coming.

homes for heroes fort stewart
 
On November 15th, we're having a super fun, all-ages event at the Liberty County Performing Arts Center on 84, the Homes for Heroes Kickoff to Benefit Hounds 4 Heroes. Free food and face painting, a bouncy house for the kids, and we'll also be giving away one super cool item (HINT: it's definitely worth the purchase of the raffle ticket!) RSVP quickly, you DON'T want to miss this!

service animals near hinesville and fort stewart



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