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What We Do
OSU students selected to be handlers will be given a service dog in training for a semester. The handler will take the dog everywhere she or he goes (Classes, restaurants, stores, library, etc.) Since the dogs are service dogs in training they are allowed to go everywhere and wear vests, along with service dog tags so that they can be easily identified. Handlers/Fosters receive the dogs when they are 3-7 months old. The dogs have been through the 4 Paws Prison Program, Rover Rehab. They are potty trained and know basic commands. We also have many general members that don't foster but assist us in fundraising and educating the public.
4 Paws for Ability is an organization located in Xenia, OH that specially trains service dogs for individuals with disabilities. The Ohio State University has teamed up with 4 Paws for Ability through the 4 Paws University Program. The goal of having this program at OSU is to help assist 4 Paws in the training of their service dogs, educate the public on service dogs and disabilities, and help 4 Paws with their mission to improve the lives of people with disabilities.
If I live in a fraternity house/sorority house, can I be a handler?
No, you cannot be a handler and live in a fraternity house or a sorority house.
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About 4 Paws for Ability
4 Paws for Ability is a service dog organization founded by Karen Shirk and based out of Xenia, Ohio. Their mission is to place quality service dogs with children with disabilities and veterans who have lost the use of their limbs or hearing; help with animal rescue, and educate the public regarding use of service dogs in public places. 4 Paws has placed over a hundred service dogs with children and veterans around the United States!
Some examples of service dogs 4 Paws provides includes autism assistance, seizure assistance, diabetes alert dogs, mobility assistance dogs and more.
Check out their website for more information!
About 4 Paws at Ohio State
As a part of 4 Paws at Ohio State, students have the opportunity to be selected as either a handler or a puppy sitter. When a handler receives their dog, they have to be prepared to have the dog live with them and go everywhere with them! Handlers take the dog everywhere they go (i.e. class, grocery store, movies, etc.) and socialize them to prepare for their future as a service dog. Puppy sitters take the dogs to socialize when the handler is not available. We also participate in a variety of educational and fundraising events on Ohio State's campus!
Breed: Golden Lab
Time at OSU: Fall '16 - Spring '17
Handlers: Haley Waldo & Brooke Boring
Major: Zoology: Pre-Vet track
Hometown: Columbus, OH
Fun Fact: I interned at Walt Disney's Animal Kingdom in their vet hospital!
Major: Biochemistry, Minor in French
Hometown: Trumbull, CT
Fun Fact: I have a twin sister who goes to Clemson! (the 2016 Fiesta Bowl was rough for our family)
Major: Sport Industry, Minor in Business & Animal Science
Hometown: Teaneck, NJ
Fun Fact: I've seen Hamilton on Broadway!