Dogs for the Deaf’s Autism Program is currently on hold and under review. While some programs have found great success with breeding dogs to specifically work with people with autism, Dogs for the Deaf has always had a mission to rescue dogs from shelters and train them to work with people in need. We have found that finding and rescuing suitable dogs from shelters for this important work is much more difficult than anticipated. It takes a particularly remarkable dog to work reliably with a child on the autism spectrum. Dog and child safety has to be considered. At this time we are reevaluating the program in order to make it more successful in the future.
As a result, we are no longer accepting applications for the program because the length of time it may take to find suitable dogs to train is uncertain and possibly far too long to be helpful for our clients.
To find an Autism Assistance dog, we recommend contacting either Canine Companions for Independence (www.cci.org) or Paws with a Cause (www.pawswithacause.org) to get more information on their Autism Dog programs.
We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.