You made it!
Thank you for considering HK9 for yourself, or your Veteran. This is how the process works:
- Step One: Read through the “5 Questions” section. A service K9 is NOT for everyone. This is a lifetime commitment for the K9, the Veteran and the Veteran’s Family. We cannot underestimate how important the 5 Questions section is.
- Step Two: Fill out our online application. This is a precursor to our full application. This screening application is to better get to know the Veteran, conditions, and needs. This is NOT the full application.
- Step Three: After HK9 receives the online application, an HK9 representative will reach out for a phone conversation and baseline assessment.
- Step Four: HK9 will email the full application to be filled out by the Veteran. This is a very important step in the process. Please ensure the application gets filled out thoroughly and completely. The full application is extremely detailed. It includes medical information, living conditions, history. HK9 MUST ensure that the Veterans selected for our K9s will not only benefit from our program, but also care for, and always treat their K9 with respect with safety and love in mind, as well as represent HK9 respectfully and with honor.
- Step Five: If the Veteran is selected for our program, the search begins to find the “right fit” in a K9. HK9 bases the selection of the K9 on needs of the Veteran.
HK9 reserves the right to deny any application. It is our mission to help every Veteran we can, but must protect the integrity of the program at all costs. We owe it to those we serve, our community and to those that donate their time, resources and funds to our program.
The Training Process (Timeline Veteran and K9 dependent):
- During training, it will be decided whether the K9 will stay with the Veteran or on location at the HK9 facility or with our trainer.
- The age of the future service dog will dictate many known variables in the training process. Service training in our program will not begin until the K9 is AT LEAST 7 months old. Obedience training will begin the day the dog is accepted into our program. It is HIGHLY encouraged that the Veteran participate in this process but not required based on the location of the Veteran accepted in our program.
- HK9 will provide all medical costs related to the K9 for the 1st year in our program.
- HK9 will provide food and kennel for the K9 for the 1st year in our program.
- The Veteran will be involved in the training process. Training for the Veteran includes, but is not limited to, commands for the K9, de-escalation while in public, conflict resolution, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).
- This process builds trust between the Veteran and the K9. It helps build a life-long bond that is imperative to the success of a service dog team.
- At the conclusion of training, (length of training is team dependent), a final practical exam is conducted. A successful exam results in graduation of the K9 team.
- Having a service dog is a lifetime commitment. Training, and working with your K9 is never “complete”. HK9 is available to help with re-training. As an ambassador of HK9, we will encourage all teams to help promote HK9 as well as help other K9 Teams.
***Please note- having a service K9 is a life long commitment. HK9 PROUDLY gifts a service K9 at ZERO cost to Veterans. This gift should not be taken lightly. All Veterans accepted in our program have a responsibility to the program to represent HK9 and other Veterans with Honor***