The Wounded Veterans Initiative

Canine Companions for Independence


Canine Companions for Independence is recognized by the VA as an accredited assistance dog provider.  With the increase in wounded veterans who could qualify for an assistance dog, Canine Companions and the VA want to help injured veterans understand the benefits an assistance dog might be able to provide them.  For a veteran making a new start putting their life back together from an injury, an assistance dog can provide the help they need to regain independence.  Now through The Wounded Veterans Initiative, Canine Companions provides assistance dogs to veterans with physical disabilities resulting from military service. 


Veterans eligible for a Service or Hearing Dog:

  • Physical disability resulting from military service
  • Full or partial use of upper body
  • Good cognitive ability and clear speech
  • Adjusted to life with a disability and at least one year post-rehabilitation
  • Stable home life to provide for a dog’s basic needs
  • Requires a dog to perform tasks to mitigate the effects of a physical disability (picking up items, pulling a wheelchair, or altering to household sounds)


Veterans eligible for a Skilled Companion:

  • Designate a facilitator, usually a spouse or family member, who is an adult member of the household to assist with training, dog handling, dog care and well being


Therapy professionals for a Facility Dog:

  • Work directly with veterans
  • Obtain approval for the use of a facility dog from your employer
  • Stable home life to provide for a dog’s basic needs

 The goal of the President’s Special Emphasis is to raise awareness of The Wounded Veterans Initiative, and to raise funds to help the project.  The dogs are free to veterans. 


 We would like all clubs to support this project by participating in any or all of the following:


Quarters for Canines to support The Wounded Veterans Initiative:

            Each time your club gathers for a meeting, circulate a container to collect all of the quarters that the members have in their purses.  At your convenience, send these donations to the Chairman, Kathy Combs.  She will hold the funds until the end of this administration.  At the 2016 OFWC Convention, a check will be presented to Canine Companions for Independence.  Collecting quarters for two years should allow us to make a sizable donation to support The Wounded Veterans Initiative.



Sponsor a “Dog Party”:

During the Dog Days of August, plan an activity for the dogs in your community.  Plan a Dogs in the Park Day, a Birthday Party for dogs, or suggest that people participate in your local parade with their dogs.  At these events, charge a fee for participation.  Present awards for things like, the best costume, the largest dog, the smallest dog, etc.  Add these funds to your quarter donations and send them to the Chairman, Kathy Combs. These funds will also be presented to CCI Wounded Veterans Initiative.


Spread the word about The Wounded Veterans Initiative:

            Invite a CCI speaker to attend one of you club meetings.  They can arrange to bring a dog with them,              and a veteran for a demonstration. 

            Plan a Town Hall meeting with a speaker, a dog, and a veteran, so members of your community can                become more aware of The Wounded Veterans Initiative.

            Obtain brochures describing The Wounded Veterans Initiative and circulate them in your community. 



For more information contact:

Canine Companions for Independence – North Central Regional Center

4989 State Route 37 East  

Delaware OH  43015


Contact Person:  Laurel Marks - (740)833-3702 Direct Line