The mission of KSDS Assistance Dogs, Inc. is to provide professionally trained guide, service and facility dogs for people in need of a canine partner to enhance their independence, to fully function in society and or to enrich their professional career responsibilities with the ongoing support of our trainers to ensure proficient working partnerships.
KSDS was incorporated as Kansas Specialty Dog Service in January 1990 by a committee of Kansas 4-H families to fill the void of accessibility to service and guide dogs in the Midwest. With a one-time $500,000 in start-up funding from the State of Kansas and additional support from donors, KSDS now includes a state-of-the art kennel, modern year-round training facility, an administrative building, an accessible housing duplex and sixplex, agility center, and a newly renovated training building.
Annette states, “ Returning to KSDS has always been my goal. I am excited and blessed to be back working and reconnecting with Graduates and Puppy Raisers. I enjoy the opportunity to make a positive difference in the lives of people with disabilities through highly trained canines.”
Indirect Public Support HelpIndirect public support represents revenue received through solicitation campaigns. This includes funding United Way and other federated fundraising organizations, but does not include donor designated contributions.
Earned Revenue HelpEarned revenue represents income generated in direct exchange for a product or service.Earned income includes income from government contracts.
Imagine dropping an item on the floor from your wheelchair and constantly needing to have a caregiver or parent pick it up for you. Consider what it’s like to have people walk by you and not look at you or acknowledge you let alone talk to you. Now add a professionally trained canine partner to the mix and you have a completely different experience. The opportunities facing our organization are the commitment of graduating more teams and providing a greater degree of independence and acceptance for individuals who are visually or physically disabled. Recently our facility dog program expanded to include courthouse dogs. These canines are specifically trained to help people who have experienced the trauma of violent crimes. They provide a furry body to hold and cry into and they never judge you. Their unconditional love and calm demeanor helps these children and adults share their experience, testify in court, and often find that allusive peace that is needed for healing.
A great challenge for KSDS Assistance Dogs, Inc. is increasing the number of puppies we place. Our waiting lists are too long. Currently, there is a two to three year wait for a guide or facility dog, and a three to four year wait for a service dog. KSDS utilizes our own breeding program, and our greatest challenge is to provide enough dogs to meet the need, thus avoiding a long wait for the applicant. Our breeding program consists of black and yellow Labrador and golden retrievers. We monitor the genetics of our breeding stock to eliminate common canine health problems such as hip and elbow dysplasia, cataracts, and heart problems. KSDS recognizes that we need to place both a healthy and well trained dog with individuals who are experiencing their own health problems. Thus, we do not use shelter dogs because of the lack of health background information that includes three to four generations of data.
To meet the need for more dogs, we have concentrated the last eighteen months on acquiring more breeding stock and in turn, increasing the number of puppies we place. We only breed our dogs to meet the needs of the three assistance dogs programs we offer (purposed breeding). The breeding goals are to produce dogs that are structurally sound so as to provide support for a person with balancing issues and/or to be capable of pulling a wheelchair. A second goal is to provide dogs that want to work and are temperamentally fit to artfully deal with a variety of sounds, smells, and other distractions.
As an accredited member of Assistance Dogs International (ADI), we adhere to the high standards of training as set forth in the ADI guidelines. We are active members of the ABC Breeding consortium and have benefitted by receiving excellent breeding stock with proven genetic profiles.
In the service industry, the challenges and opportunities abound, and KSDS is no different. KSDS is a debt free organization with a campus consisting of eight buildings that include canine housing units, training buildings, tornado shelters and ADA approved housing. In addition, KSDS is one of the few nonprofit organizations to give their dogs to their new partners FREE. Since we rely heavily on donations, our challenge is to remain financially stable at a time when the economy is depressed. Our approach to solving this issue includes making conservative budget decisions, developing a variety of fund raising strategies, and consulting with a capital campaign fund raising group for advice.
We believe with all our hearts that we are making a difference in this world one puppy at a time, and we are committed to continuing this effort for another 25 years.
Greater Kansas City Community Foundation
1055 Broadway Blvd., Suite 130, Kansas City, Missouri 64105
816.842.0944 | email@example.com
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