Examples of services our dogs offer

Children with Autism

New Horizons Service Dogs, Inc. has a program called “Children with Autism” that provides the children and their families with the ability to tackle some of the many issues associated with autism.  Through companionship, comfort, and unconditional love, our service dogs help provide a calming sense of consistency and stability in the child’s life.  Many of our young recipients have been able to develop a relationship with their dog unlike any that one is able to have with humans.

Service dogs provide several security measures and freedoms for children and their families to go out in public safely and confidently.  Our dogs help alleviate the wandering or bolting behaviors common in children with autism by acting as an anchor when tethered to the child.  The dogs can also be stopped through the use of commands like “stop” and “sit” by the parents in situations where the child is starting to wander.

Service dogs allow autistic children to increase their participation and functional levels in everyday activities by providing a greater connection to their external environment, and a stronger ability to form social relationships and behavioral skills.  The ability of our dogs to calm the children results in an increased attention span and a greater aptitude for learning. A service dog can also ease a child’s fear and anxiety due to environmental changes and other triggers, resulting in reduced feelings of anger and aggression.

Our service dogs have been used to calm children who couldn’t sleep alone prior to being paired with their dog, as a way to break the repetitive behaviors of the child, as a way for the children to work on touching and being touched, and as a way for the children to work on verbal communication by using the dog’s commands.  Overall, the children develop a greater sensitivity toward the needs and feelings of their service dog and others.

Service dogs placed under our “Children with Autism” program drastically expand a child’s capabilities to experience more of life and to grow!

Court Dogs

New Horizons Service Dogs, Inc. has started developing a program that is relatively new for the service dog industry: Court Dogs. NHSDI will place our service dogs in various court systems as an emotional support mechanism in many different situations.  These dogs can be used with children and adults that have to take the stand as a victim or witness for sexual abuse, rape, domestic violence, or many other emotionally stressful cases.  The Court Dogs assist both victims and witnesses who have experienced physical, psychological or emotional trauma by reducing tensions and creating a more relaxed and safe environment for them on the stand.

Facility Dogs

New Horizons Service Dogs, Inc. has placed service dogs in facilities to work with professional care givers, educators, or skilled volunteers in fields such as physical and occupational therapy, special education, hospice care and hospital visitation. Facility Dogs engage patients in activities to stimulate healing and recovery, provide comfort and unconditional love to the seriously ill or confined, and serve in teaching programs for students with special needs.

If you work in the judicial system and are interested in partnering with New Horizons in our Court Dog program development, please contact the office by phone at 386.456.0408 or by email at info@nhsdi.org.

Mobility Assistance

New Horizons Service Dogs, Inc.was founded in 1995 and since then has become an industry leader for the breeding and training of service dogs to assist people with mobility disabilities. Although NHSDI has added a few other programs in the past few years, the majority of our placements have been with adults and children with disabilities such as brain or spinal cord injuries, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, multiple sclerosis and other diseases that result in severely limited mobility.

Team Training and Graduation

Following an in-depth interview to assess our client’s specific requirements, a customized advanced training program is designed and implemented to ensure the client and canine relationship will be a success. Once our dogs are fully trained for the client’s individual needs, NHSDI holds an intensive, two-week training program for the newly partnered client and canine at no cost to the client. The program consists of lectures, hands-on training, field trips for “real world” training, and culminates with a certification test for the partnership. After the two-week Team Training, NHSDI provides a lifetime of follow-up training and support for the partnership.

To acknowledge the success of our client and canine partnership we have periodic graduation ceremonies for the partners and their families.