Message from the Executive Director

FSDS is privileged to continue to hold a Platinum Rating with GuideStar as well as the designation of QCO (Qualified Charitable Organization) with the Arizona Department of Revenue.

What does this mean to and for you?

  1. You can be confident that FSDS meets or exceeds the highest standards of transparency in both our program and operations reporting.
  2. When you contribute to support our work, your gift qualifies you for a dollar-for-dollar tax credit on your AZ tax return.

“The maximum QCO credit donation amount for 2023:

  • $421 single, married filing separate or head of household;
  • $841 married filing joint.”

Arizona law allows QCO donations made during 2023 or donations made from January 1, 2024 through April 15, 2024 to be claimed on the 2022 Arizona income tax return.”

Please remember to go to to complete the required information on the form under “Tax Credits” and “Contributions to Qualifying Charitable Organizations” and enter FSDS’ code #22372.

Thanks for your consideration when making your gifts to provide “A New Leash on Life” for individuals with disabilities and their canine partners.



Wellness Tips

Storm readiness – with the arrival of hurricane and monsoon season, we remind all readers to keep their dogs indoors during storms.

We also caution our readers to supervise any drinking water that is left outdoors.  In the summer months, if you reside in an area where toads are an issue, remember that toads secrete a toxin from their skin.  Dogs come into contact with this by either catching the toads in their mouth, or by drinking from a water dish that the toads have accessed.  Toad poisoning can be lethal for dogs.


Classroom News

We were pleased to have had the opportunity of being back on AZTV Live the Daily Mix with one of our students Scott and SDIT Luna to be able to show viewers how Luna was trained to interrupt behaviors. Interrupting behaviors are extremely helpful to those whether it’s self-harm, dissociation, a meltdown, or something else. It’s important to teach interrupts using a method that the dog you’re working with is most comfortable with, and that could be pawing, bumping with a nose, barking, or even jumping up on their handler. Take a look at our YouTube video of Scott and Luna in action on TV!


Our Advanced morning class and Advanced afternoon classes have successfully completed their canine CPR and FA as part of their incentive for being a part of our 18-month Service Dog program. All students take this shortly after they complete our online didactic course of Service Dog 101. They all passed with flying colors and now are Canine Safety Certified for the next 3 years! 

Lastly our Advanced afternoon class all passed their public appropriateness test this past month and all did fantastic jobs and exceeded expectations. Now they are clear to go anywhere in public with their SDIT. 

We continue to be hard at work generalizing those previous taught commands along with some new things we have introduce to the teams…We have been working on the following tasks:

  • Opening and closing a cabinet 
  • Retrieving items out of sight 
  • Watch/Block 
  • Block/Cover 
  • Lateral walking 
  • Going through a tunnel (with agility set) 
  • Closing doors (hit it command) 
  • Item differentiation 
  • Go Get Help 
  • Get water bottle  
  • Alerting (bumping with nose to leg shaking) 

Advanced Class Highlights

Tom/Sharon & Ruby – Ruby’s made excellent progress with her “go get help” command around distractions 

Charlotte & Luna – Luna is doing wonderful at her “hit it” command which is for closing doors from a distance.  

Kerry/Jase & Sadie – Sadie has mastered retrieving items out of a cabinet and bringing the item back to her handler 

Scott & Luna – Luna has been making phenomenal progress on her watch/block command  


Beginner Class Highlights

Shriji & Elfo – Elfo has been making excellent progress with his interruption training. 

Tori & Colson – Colson has exceeded working off lead and staying next to Tori around distractions.    

Kevin & Daisy – Daisy is performing really well with her “switch” command when approaching distractions.  

Charlotte & Otis – Otis has shown great improvement with his Sit for 1 minute while food is on the floor and not going into a down position. 

Kyla & Koda – Koda has successfully demonstrated retrieving items out of the cabinet and brining the item back to his handler 

Mason & Nebby – Nebby has made great progress with her “pawing” on her owner’s leg on command which will essentially move onto an alert.


Midweek Beginner Class Highlights

Chris & Sentry – Sentry has been performing wonderfully with retrieving items from different rooms and bringing them back to his handler. 

Dee & Morgan – Morgan has been making great progress with his Watch/Block command and his “hit it” command.  

Patti & Payton – Payton’s has successfully been performing Deep Pressure Therapy without being cued.


With Appreciation

Our heartfelt thanks to each of the following July supporters.  You make our day every day with your kindness, generosity and caring:

Timothy Glenn, monthly supporter

  • Loretta Chase
  • Shriji Shah
  • Todd Johnson
  • Josh Cornelius
  • Henry Smith
  • John & Nancy Hamlet
  • Sheryl Iszler
  • John Henson
  • Jessica Parker
  • CAF America
  • Benjamin Santil
  • Rickey Hipp
  • Marissa Boone
  • Charlotte Fornasiero
  • Janina Alkhalloufi
  • CPM Loans
  • Latrice Jackson
  • Alan Martin



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