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2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit

My Angel with Paws, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal-Related, Animals, Centers to Support the Independence of Specific Populations, Health, Human Services

Mission: My Angel with Paws is committed to expanding public understanding and knowledge of the needs of children and adults with physical disabilities through the breeding, training, placement and continuing education of service and therapy dogs.

Programs:

To implement our educational process for puppy raisers/trainers to teach the skills the service dog needs to achieve a successful partnership.

Ensure a smooth transfer between puppy raisers and clients by providing clients with educational visits and partner training.   

Develop and empower the relationship between the human partner and their service dog by providing on going support after placement and assisting with new skills as the needs of the clients change.

Provide information and educational services to groups and organizations to expand their knowledge and understanding of service and therapy dogs and how they meet the needs of children and adults living with disabilities in our communities..

Community Stories

17 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I started working with My Angel with Paws just over a year ago, August 2014 When I recived a service dog from the organization. I came to the organization looking for a dog that might help with the injuries I recived in the United States Marine Corps durning my several deployments to Afghanistan. What I got from the organization was not only a Angel with paws the word dog just isnt an accurate statment for my life compainion, but also a family and since of belonging to something bigger than myself and a group that saw me as a person not a man with a unifrom. Since that first meeting and after reciving my life compainion I have continued volunteer my time to the organization to give back to a group that have given me not only my viability and life back but has also taught me how to live.

2 Pamela M H.

Client Served

Rating: 5

All the people associated with My Angel With Paws have been helpful, knowledgeable, compassionate and informed in my obtaining my forever friend, partner and service dog, Dora. Chris has a big heart and is an excellent dog trainer. She brings together a rewarding union between canine and client, bonding both into a working team. Since receiving my Labrador Retriever, Dora, I no longer am taking a back-seat in life. We go places, have a greater involvement in life and our confidence level is at an all time high. The experience associated with obtaining a service dog was one of the my most rewarding experiences. Since I became diagnosed with multiple autoimmune issues and disabilities over 10 years ago, I am more than happy. My Angel With Paws has help strengthened my ABILITIES! Thank You, MAWP!!

1 MyEdge

Client Served

Rating: 5

I met Chris at My Angel with Paws about a year ago. I had been working with a rescue I had adopted from the animal shelter but he just wasn't working out for what I needed & Chris recognized that right away. Once I was introduced to Edge a beautiful Golden Retriever it wasn't long after that the journey began. It has completely changed my life! Since my brain surgery in 2005 I had become very insecure & very depressed. I had no desire to go out anywhere. I almost backed out because I did not think I would ever be able to go through with the Partner Training. But Chris & Titus were so understanding of my situation. With that experience & receiving my service dog Edge I now have the confidence & the desire to get out & go places. Edge is not only my balance~brace support, he is my forever companion. I can't say enough...thank them enough...for all they do! They are always there for continued support too!

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I first heard of MAWP while I was in the hospital recovering from a brain injury. MAWP is unlike any other organization, training and placing service dogs to people in need for no charge. It is a true service. They took the time to meet with me to not only determine which dog chooses me, but to educate me about what having a service dog entails and how it can change my life. That's exactly what Cricket, my service dog has done. Before I met Cricket, I could not walk on my own, nor did I have the confidence or sense of safety that she provides. It is now almost 2 years since I got a service dog and I not only returned to college, but I am pursuing a masters degree and now independently walking. I owe everything to MAWP, and I cannot thank them enough. I would not be where I am today without their support and my companion, Cricket.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My Dad has had Parkinsons now for several years, and realizing a service dog could be of help to he and his wife, they became part of this organization to be trained on using a god and to be in line for receiving one. But it turned out to be so much more a blessing then either of them ever expected. The family of trainers and supporters that they've adopted in this organization, in addition to Gia, their service dog, have all helped immensely, what a fantastic community and service these folks provide. My Dad has not been this alive and happy in a while!

1 Debbie64

Client Served

Rating: 5

We met Chris, the Director at My Angel With Paws, a few years ago. My husband and I have been training our German Shepherd since he was a puppy to be a Balance Assist Service Dog for me. Of course, he helps me in so many other ways, too. Chris and the other volunteer trainers have been working weekly with us for about 2 years now. They are all so knowledgeable, encouraging, patient and caring and really want us to succeed. Nicky has come a long way since he was a little 8-week old puppy - thanks to them. He's becoming an awesome Service Dog and a BIG help to me! In the two years we've been with them, and seeing the dedicated volunteer puppy raisers, we've seen many dogs paired with their forever person. They even have a graduation ceremony, which really brings tears to your eyes when you see the interaction, love and great pride between the disabled person and their dog partners. The dogs really change the forever persons lives forever and give them their independence back! Such an amazing Organization!!

Previous Stories
1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I have mobility problems and fall easily. We were so fortunate to have met Chris at My Angel With Paws, teaching us to train our then 8-week old German Shepherd puppy on the road to becoming a Balance Assist Service Dog for me. She and the other volunteer instructors have been working weekly with us for a year and a half now. They are all so patient and caring and really want us to succeed. Nicky has come a long way, thanks to them. He's going to be an awesome Service Dog and a BIG help to me! It's really amazing to see the dogs paired with their forever person. They even have a graduation ceremony, which really brings tears to your eyes when you see the interaction, love and great pride between the disabled people with their partners. They really do change their forever persons life!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

When I thought all hope was lost I found My Angel With Paws. Most service dog organizations will tell you to fill out an application and when they have an available dog in 3 to 7 years they will contact you. The Executive Director of this 100% volunteer organization called me personally and assured me that someway, somehow, my child's needs would be met as quickly as possible. As the mother of a special needs child with Autism, severe PTSD, ADHD, intellectually Disabilities, and Mobility Issues, where do you turn when all the specialists tell you a service dog is urgently needed and will change your child's life and put her on the road to recovery? After speaking with many organizations, with layers of administration, My Angel With Paws stepped up and met my needs by compassionate people. They embraced my child and went above and beyond. They have given me hope, changed my child's life, started her on the road to recovery, ensured that she will have a lifelong companion and provided me with renewed faith that there are nonprofits who uphold the public's trust, what every nonprofit pledges to do. They are to be commended for their heartfelt commitment and compassion to those in need.

1 Kate47

Client Served

Rating: 5

My Angel With Paws has been amazing to deal with! I'm a 24 year old with a rare disorder called Dysautonomia. It affects nearly every system in my body, and they were so understanding. I've never been treated better than when I'm at MYWP (MY Angel with Paws). They know my limitations and work so hard to teach me and my future service dog (whoever it may be...we're still matching) without pushing me too hard. Also, my needs are changing now, since I'm getting sicker lately and they continue to work with me to match me with a service dog appropriately. :-) They've even offered to keep in touch after placing the dog so that we can keep training and alter trainings as my condition deteriorates. They've been truly amazing, and their policy on pricing has been a God-send as without this program I could never afford a service dog. They charge a $50 adoption fee, normally a service dog costs $8,000 or more! (And they told me that they never turn someone away for not being able to pay, so they're even more amazing at a second glance!

2

Client Served

Rating: 5

I am extremely for fortunate to be a client of My Angel with Paws ("MAWP"), and to be partnered with Chancey, my service dog and friend. Having had a service dog trained by another organization, and having been involved with several other organizations, I've never met trainers more competent, consistent and, most importantly, compassionate with dogs than those at MAWP. From the beginning of my relationship with them, Chris, Marilyn, Pat, Rita and the other trainers, handlers and other volunteers have been very patient with and kind to me, though, admittedly, I have not been the easiest of students. They have gone out of their, even coming to my house to help me deal with specific. I enjoy going to training classes and other events on a regular basis, though not required, for the camaraderie and for the education. The most impressive aspect, and what sets MAWP apart from and ahead of all other trainers I've met is their collective belief that the dog always comes first.=

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

As a client who has recently received her special partner, Chesley, and who is currently involved in "Partner Training", I am amazed at the dedication and expertise of the director and incredible devoted volunteers of this organization. The amount of time, money and love all have selflessly given is so admirable. I am a MS patient confined to a wheelchair and Chesley's skills will be such an assistance to me. It will be so much help to have her able to pick up, retrive, and bring me items on the around the house and grounds. I especially look forward to her bringing me the telephone if I fall and need to call for help (which happens too frequently!). It will also be wonderful to have her help in tugging and pushing things (ie. doors and drawers) and in pulling off my clothes. All of these special skills require hours of training and for those special individuals involved in said training, I will be eternally grateful. I highly recommend this organization for the 2012 Top Rated Non-Profits List.

1 mskabar

Client Served

Rating: 5

Before MAWP I was fighting to maintain minimal functionality. I am being medically discharged from the military. The stress from my disability and from being separated from what I had done since I was eighteen years old- literally my entire adult life- had resulted in recurrent bleeding ulcers on top of whatever else was going on. All my energy was spent on trying to act "normal". Hawkeye, who I got just over two months ago, has changed so much. Within the first month he was doing things he hadn't been trained to do that helped me get out of my house and deal with day to day activities. He's both relaxed and attentive. The people at MAWP never made me feel less for having an "invisible disability" and were very attentive to limitations while at the same time refusing to let me use them as a crutch. With Hawkeye's help I've been able to go back to school and stay there. He's even helped improve my relationships with my family and friends. It's also a relief to know that I won't have to worry about falls this winter since Hawk is great in his harness. (The problems in my back mean that one fall can put me in bed for a week or more, and that makes everything else worse. ) Bottom line, this is an incredible, ethically run and caring charity. I highly recommend them.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

I was blessed when I was awarded a Servce Dog, Riley, in February 2012. My life has changed so much for the positive. I am capable of doing so much more than I could have without Riley. My confidence levels have gone through the roof due to the excellant training that Riley and I have received. They have taught me how to work with a Service Dog. Chris and Valerie were there for me in every aspect of the training, without their help and guidance we would not have been the great team we are today. Thank you My Angel With Paws from the bottom of my heart. Keep up the great work for others to become as capable as Riley and me.

1

Client Served

Rating: 5

My husband and I reached out to My Angle with Paws about a service dog. They are located in Florida and we are in Illinois. It is difficult to travel so Chris from My Angel with Paws came out to Illinois to help us. We soon had a puppy in raining and amazing support and training. This has changed our life's and has helped my husband tremendously. My Angel with Paws is an amazing organization with wonderful people.

1 Judi S.

Client Served

Rating: 5

My first service dog passed away after we had been a team for 11 years. I had applied for a successor dog, but after months turned into years, I realized that the current coordinators were not working towards matching me with another companion. And then, a gift from god. I met chris, the executive director of MAWP. She listened to my tale, had me fill out an application and she proceeded to work with me. In just a few weeks, she got in touch with me and set up a home visit.

Within a couple of months, I was invited to meet my wonderful service dog, snickers. Having gone through team training once, I thought I knew it all. How wrong I was! Chris taught me things I had never known. Her love for her clients and her dogs surpasses anybody I have ever known. It was a tough 2 weeks and chris expected a lot from us, and would not settle for less. She taught me to be a good handler.

Everyone associated with MAWP is so committed to their clients, and they are all volunteers. The relationship does not end when training is over, meetings are set up to see how then team is doing at home, making sure that both the dog and the handler are happy and safe.

My life changed on that october night when i met chris. I don't know how she does it, but she knew that snickers was the dog for me. He accompanies me on my trips to NY and he truly is my rock. Snickers makes each day fun as we do our daily chores.

None of this would be possible withoutMAWP, their volunteers and my personal angel, chris.
Snickers and I are eternally grateful.





2

Client Served

Rating: 5

My ten year daughter, Alia had been on a waiting list for a service dog for several years when I first learned of My Angel With Paws. One day while speaking to a friend I shared my wish for Alia to get a service dog, a companion that would love her, assist her and belong only to her. My friend referred me to My Angel With Paws, by that afternoon I was introduced to My Angel With Paws and very shortly after Alia was given her life changing dog, Angel. From the first day Alia met Angel they connected and Angel became Alia's true life Angel through love, loyalty and friendship. Chris, the Executive Director, directly taught me how to train Angel through extensive training classes, support and care. I have never met a more dedicated individual to her dogs and her organization than Chris and her trainers. Because of her dedication, love for her dogs and her clients, Alia now has her Angel and we will forever be thankful to my Angel With Paws for such a blessing.

2 zoey1024

Client Served

Rating: 5

Sofie who was given to me by My Angel with Paws has changed my life. I now get to go out in the community and share my experiences with her. I get to tell people all about how a service dog changes peoples lives. Thank you My Angel with Paws!