Facility Therapy Dogs
BluePath’s mission is to provide autism service dogs that offer safety, companionship, and independence. Some of our dogs may choose an alternative career path and work as facility therapy dogs in educational, residential, or day-habilitation settings. Their trained skills can greatly improve clients’ quality of life by enhancing therapies and reducing anxiety.
BluePath places facility therapy dogs within two hours of our Dutchess County headquarters. We provide initial handler training and placement guidance, and we are available for consultation throughout the working life of the dog. Pricing for a facility therapy dog averages around $10,000 and ownership is transferred to the facility when payment is received. The facility will be required to cover the ongoing food and veterinary expenses for the dog, estimated to be about $1,200 annually.
BluePath dogs are typically Labrador retrievers, Golden retrievers, or Golden-Lab crosses. The dog lives with a staff member and becomes part of the person’s regular home life during non-working hours.
The availability of facility therapy dogs is intermittent and unpredictable. It is important to note that facility therapy dogs are not service dogs and do not receive public access.
- Work in a school or facility environment for a minimum of 20 hours a week
- Have the support and approval from employer for the use of a facility dog
- Demonstrate ability to manage and care for a dog in a safe, loving, and healthy home
- Able to utilize the tasks the facility dog is trained to do
- Ability to provide for the dog’s physical, psychological and financial needs