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Pictured from left to right, Paul Knorr, Tammie Zaleski, Caliber COO Russ Smith, Caliber EVP Chad Smith, Caliber VP Military Lending Cristina Bergjans, and Kathy Gordon

One of our Caliber sales teams, based in Coppell, TX, was proud to participate in a donation drive to benefit the Patriot PAWS Service Dogs organization, to honor Military May 2019. Together, Caliber and the Patriot PAWS raised over $2,500 in puppy supplies and $1,500 in cash! As a fun surprise, when the representatives from Patriot PAWS came to Caliber to collect the donations, at our Caliber headquarters, they brought along Mason, a sweet seven-month-old yellow lab!

donated-dog-toys_400.jpgThe Patriot PAWS Service Dogs Mission

Mason, like the other Patriot PAWS service dogs, is trained as a service dog of the highest quality. The mission of Patriot PAWS Service Dogs is to provide professionally-trained service dogs at no cost to disabled American veterans and others with mobile disabilities and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to help restore their physical and emotional independence.

Not only do they provide companionship, love, and protection, in many instances, these specially-trained pups have literally saved the lives of their owners.

To the delight of Caliber employees, Mason politely demonstrated some of the special “tricks” he’s learned, which will help him as the companion and service dog to a veteran in need, like:

  • Sitting under his owner’s chair upon command
  • Walking with a loose leash, so as not to pull his owner
  • Opening a handicap door
  • Waving on command
  • Biting a metal key ring, to help him grab the house keys or leash

training_300.jpgSpecialized Training

During training, the Patriot PAWS dogs live and train full time with someone affiliated with Patriot PAWS, and are intentionally exposed to as much as possible, to get acclimated to many situations and sounds. It’s important that service dogs are trained not to overreact to stimuli while protecting their veteran.

  • If the dog’s owner is physically disabled, the dog is trained to stay close, and not run off if startled.
  • If the dog has an owner with PTSD, who is sensitive to sound, the dog is trained to suppress the need to bark loudly.

More About Patriot PAWS

Founder, Lori Stevens, started Patriot PAWS in 2005, after working with disabled veterans to train their service dogs at the VA Hospital in Dallas, TX. The Patriot PAWS Rockwall campus now includes administrative, training, and kennel facilities, and is home to many as 25 dogs. Working with volunteer puppy raisers and the innovative Prison Training program at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, the Patriot PAWS organization can train an additional 35 dogs in other locations and place about 10-15 Patriot PAWS Service Dogs with disabled veterans each year.

To learn more and/or donate, click here.