National Service Dog Month is a fundraiser on behalf of U.S. organizations to help support train and honor service dogs. There are many types of service dogs. This September we are highlighting two types of service dogs in particular, Guide Dogs and Military Working Dogs.
"Guide dogs and Military Working Dogs are heroes, providing safe mobility, loving companionship and restoring confidence to their handlers. At least 10 million Americans live with vision loss and guide dogs are their precious lifelines to the world. Military Working Dogs support the war on terror, safeguard military bases and activities, and detect explosives before they inflict harm,” said Dick Van Patten of Natural Balance Pet Foods. “This year, we hope to raise $1 million to help these incredible guide dogs and Military Working Dogs for their important work."
Service dogs are assistance dogs that are specifically trained to help people who have disabilities including visual or hearing impairment, and also to help people with mental disabilities including Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and severe depression. Some dogs are even trained to help with medical conditions such as recurrent seizures or diabetes. Additionally, they may also be trained to carry life support equipment such as oxygen tanks.
In the United States, the Code of Federal Regulations for the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 define a service animal as "any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including, but not limited to, guiding individuals with impaired vision, alerting individuals with impaired hearing to intruders or sounds, providing minimal protection or rescue work, pulling a wheelchair, or fetching dropped items."
Additionally, through the hard work of Natural Balance and Petco, this is the first time in U.S. history that the U.S. Congress has elevated an animal, a dog, to national monument status by law. We are proud to help raise awareness and support for the country’s first ever national monument honoring Military Working Dogs, which will be dedicated in 2013 and reside at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas.
All proceeds from specially marked bags of Natural Balance Jerky Bars purchased at Petco stores will support this important monument.