Phase One: Training at MAPs headquarters and a visit
We breed our own English Labrador dogs from a bloodline of service dogs we have used for several generations. We select one or two for a child to become an autism service dog and offer the others through our other website IslandLabradors.com to local families.
You get to choose the name of your dog and get pictures and videos of the puppy growing up! We encourage you to share these with your children. Often this helps your child feel more comfortable before meeting the puppy the first time.
If your local we can bring the puppy for the first visit. If you live further away then we encourage you to come to the Golden Isles Georgia and meet your wonderful new puppy.
We raise the puppy in our home and train the dog in a home environment. Your puppy will learn all the basic and advanced training right with us along side with others that are further along and get reinforcement training from observing other advanced autism service dogs. They will learn therapy work, to sleep with children, socializing with other dogs and public training over about 18 months.
Phase Two: Dog training you and your family
We will have several training sessions over the phone. We will send you training material including video training to prepare you for your autism service dog. This will allow you to get an idea of what is to come and your free to ask as many questions as you like from the privacy of your home. We are aware and very sensitive to the fact that children with autism are all very unique and have their own challenges. These training sessions have time allowed for families to share their concerns and stories which allows our training to adjust and be focused for their unique family.
Next, our trainers will come to your home with the service dog and start training you. We will visit you most frequently visited places like your grocery store, park, Docter’s office and such. We take the time needed to get you comfortable with walking and using an autism service dog with your child and family.
Phase Three: Welcoming the service dog home
After the puppy I’d fully trained, usually about 18 months or so we come to your hometown. Our trainers stay in a nearby hotel and work with the family every day for about seven days. This is when the specific needs of the child and family are addressed, and the service dog is fine-tuned to the family’s routine. The tethering process begins if not already in phase two.
We offer payment plans designed for your family.