Puppy Raiser/Foster Program
Puppy Raiser Requirements:
If you are interested in working in this part of our Program please read the following information. If you qualify and would like to become a puppy raiser or a foster puppy parent please go to the APPLICATION page and fill out an application. The directions of how to send us the application is at the top of the page.
Puppy raisers provide a vital role in the life of a service dog, preparing and raising that puppy to become his own special person’s world. How a puppy is raised can make or break a service dog, or any dog, so raising a service dog puppy is a very important role to fill. Puppy raisers need to have a true love and passion with tons of patience, knowing when to be firm and when to laugh at the antics of a puppy.
A puppy raiser’s job is to be the first loving home once it leaves its litter. There, the puppy raiser teaches it house manners, not to chew on things other than chew toys it’s given, not to jump on people, furniture or counters, not to go potty in the house, not to mouth or bite on people, etc. They teach them basic obedience through classes at BASDT and practice the skills they learn. They teach them about the world around them by careful exposure to different types of flooring from tile, carpet or wood to grass, rubber, artificial turf to gravel, etc..
They teach them how to be confident in new situations, taking them to new places and carefully introducing them to new experiences
Puppy raisers must be able to bring the puppy to weekly classes for obedience.
Puppy raisers must fill out the weekly and monthly paperwork on how the puppy is doing.
Puppy raisers cannot work more than half a day unless they are able to take the puppy with them to work. Puppies cannot spend long hours alone every day.
Puppy raisers must be willing and able to attend four fundraisers a year.
Puppy raisers must:
- Be approved by the puppy program staff and members.
- Must pass a home visit.
- Have a veterinarian reference.
- Be comfortable with large breed dogs.
- Have the ability to follow instructions, pay attention to detail, work independently in a structured environment and, at other times, work with others in a group setting.
- Be physically capable of bending and standing for a minimum of 30 minutes at a time, lifting and carrying 20 lbs, and safely leash-walking a puppy and an adult dog for up to a 30 minute walk.
- Raise the puppy inside as a house dog.
- Provide an environment free of dogs that may have a history of aggression.
- Always provide direct supervision when the puppy is with other dogs.
- Provide a safe, enclosed area for free running, play, and exercise.
- Provide appropriate food, maintain a healthy weight and attend to grooming as directed.
- Keep the puppy healthy and up to date on vaccinations. Administer heartworm prevention, flea control, and any additional medications provided by BASDT for your puppy. Report any behavioral, physical or health related issues to BASDT.
- Attend and participate in required classes, meetings, and outings.
- Communicate openly and promptly with your advisor
- Complete required reports and any other data as needed in a timely manner.
The above list of requirements is not inclusive. Puppy raisers, fosters and volunteers are required to follow all additional instructions, guidelines, policies, and procedures given by BASDT staff in written documents and other means. This includes all training, care, and management techniques, rules and procedures.