Do you have a facility? In November 2016 one of our Officers generously financed a Four Acre plot of land which will be our facility. Located in Harris County, Ga , this beautiful, peaceful, quiet, haven of rest for the dogs and veterans includes a house and an metal outbuilding which will house the dogs in training to be service dogs. We are excited about everything this property offers to include a great deal of room to exercise for the dogs, the incredible state of art kennels we will build, the indoor training facility we will build, and the housing we will build for our future service dog handlers to reside in while they are learning to be a service dog handler.
When you come through these gates you witness nature’s beauty as peace and love settle into your core as that is what we embody. Grape vines, pear and fig trees capture your vision as you also watch the playful spirit of the pups as they run, play, chase either, and come give you a check in nudge on the leg giving you their love.
Leaving the outside world temporarily behind you become totally engaged in the incredible sense of serenity and happiness. You become intertwined with nature and it’s comforting healing combined with the dogs abilities to take you to places you never anticipated. Your heart opens and your mind clears and expands.
As you watch the flames from the fire dance clearing and purging away hurt and pain you realize this had been a not only a moment but a place of healing which will greatly enrich your life making you want to come back again. This is your sanctuary and this is Freedom Fidos.
How do you get your dogs? Freedom Fido’s is proud to rescue and train dogs from local animal shelters. Shelters are the primary source of the dogs we train to be service dogs. Additionally we have a percentage of our veterans which require a hypo allergenic dog requiring us to get those dogs from individuals which breed dogs. We have also been very grateful to the breeders which have a heart for veterans and donate their dogs to us. One such organization is Newpuppies4u. We are extremely grateful to Dave and Lisa for the way they love dogs, the dogs they have donated to Freedom Fidos and how love what they do. They exhibit such incredible passion, ethics, and always come from a place of love.
Will you train a dog to be a service dog that already allows belongs to an individual?
We no longer offer this service.
Are your service dogs, “FREE”? We provide the dog, all training, as well as lifelong support, at no cost to the individual. However, the services we provide are not free. Any veteran who receives our services already paid for them many times over due to the sacrifices they made and continue to make for our Country. After the selection criterion is met, any individual who chooses to receive our service will go through intensive training during which time they will be expected to invest themselves learning how to be a service dog handler with the same intensity that we will invest ourselves in them. Freedom Fido’s will expect full compliance and excellence in the way they represent the requirements of the American with Disabilities Act, Freedom Fido’s, and service dogs at large, as they exemplify a high degree of ethics, professionalism, and tolerance. Additionally each service dog handler is expected to comply with our monthly home checks, weekly check in, 3 month re-certification process, attend events with the organization, and be involved with the community, as well as other policies we have in place.
What percentage of your donations goes to the veterans or children? 100% goes to the dogs, organization, and facility.
How long does it take you to train a service dog? 2 years.
Does anyone associated with Freedom Fido’s receive a salary? No. Any individual who is associated with Freedom Fido’s, to include the Founder, our Board Members, trainers, and the volunteers, already had a salary before they were carefully selected. They work tirelessly for Freedom Fido’s simply because they care about humanity. They choose to play a significant role which helps us deliver the services we provide. Their contributions dramatically increase the quality of life for the people we serve. They all have a proven track record of success in their personal, public, and business lives. In the future in order to more adequately meet the demand (200 plus individuals) we might have to change this practice. As needed we will pay service dog trainers.
How much does it cost you to train a service dog? We have to have $13,000 in escrow before we can start training a service dog. While we are not at the lowest end of the spectrum with this figure we are on the lower end of the spectrum. Many service dogs organizations state $20,000 and above. The Veterans Administration pays their service dog contractors $40,000 to $60,000.We are grateful for any and all donations which are held in escrow until we are able to start training a service dog.
Fidoes4Heroes(DBA Freedom Fidos) Finances: One Hundred percent of all donations go back to the organization, the dogs, and the veterans. No member of Freedom Fidos takes a salary. A 990(n) Postcard was filed in December of 2016 as our donations received was far below $50,000…At the end of our fiscal year, January 2018, our accountant will file a 990 long form which with Board approval will be published on our website. YTD October 13, 2017, $19,900 has been received by Freedom Fidos. We are very grateful for the amazing support.
How many Service dog Handlers do you have? We have placed 36 service dogs and have a waiting list of 200 plus individuals.
What is the process to get a service dog: Freedom Fidos provides task-trained service dogs to veterans with physical disabilities. We specialize in training service dogs for veterans with traumatic brain injuries.
If you feel you meet this criteria, please fill out an application. You will need medical documentation as evidence of your physical disability and a medical professional’s explanation of how a service dog can assist you and improve your daily activities of living.
Upon review of your application, we will notify you of any additional information we may need from you. If we feel that Freedom Fidos can provide you with a service dog, we will notify you directly to schedule a phone interview or face to face meeting if possible.
Our selection committee will discuss with you physical needs, challenges you face, your living situation, our policies and expectations we have of you as a potential Freedom Fidos Service dog handler. If we determine that you are a good candidate for a service dog, we will place you on our waiting list. Once you are at the top of the list we will notify you. We will select and begin to train the dog once we have raised adequate funds to maintain the dog while in training.
“That is a cool trick your dog does:” Anything you see our dogs do is not a trick. It is either an example of a task we can teach the dog, or it is an actual task the dog already does in order to help its handler.
Your dog’s look like they don’t miss a meal. Absolutely they don’t because they are our fur kids and we love them. Per our vets recommendation every dog we have is right at its perfect weight or 1-3 pounds under weight. We use Rachel Ray Just six, in addition to a raw food diet as well as supplements
What are your training techniques?
Connection- We feel that this overcomes a great deal of training.
We strive to learn what motivates each individual dog-Whether that be treats, toys, praise, or tennis balls. Typically we find that a combination is what we end up using. Additionally we find that what is applicable in one moment may not be the same in another moment. Marker training is additionally used which is usually a simple yes or no. Repetition: doing the same thing every time. Because our dogs will be out in public as service dogs a great deal of de-sensitization is required. We find that because of connection and enhancing the dogs individuality we end up with very drivey dogs.
Who maintains your dogs health and welfare? VETERINARIAN TO FREEDOM FIDOS Dr. Phil Carey,DVM, is the veterinarian to all our Freedom Fidos fur kids! Whether it's our pack or the fur kids in training to become a service dog for a veteran in need...we choose Dr. Carey. Located in Ellerslie,GA...Dr. Carey even makes house calls!
So if you are looking for an exceptional veterinarian who goes above and beyond...Freedom Fidos recommends Dr. Carey.