In August, the Stafford County Board of Supervisors issued a proclamation in recognition of the work done by service dogs. International Assistance Dog Week takes place each year, starting on the first Sunday of August.
The recognition celebrates and honors hardworking assistance dogs, raises awareness and educates the public about how the specially trained animals aid people in our communities, honors puppy raisers and trainers of assistance dogs, and recognizes heroic deeds performed by assistance dogs.
The Canine Companions for Independence family includes Linda and Rachael Stern, Skilled Companion (SC) Mufasa, Riley Randall, Pup in Program (PIP) Zeus, Alex Diviney Zinger, Sharon and Matt Hoioos, SC Shiloh, SC Mowgli, Belinda Hurlbert, Ronny Kaye Tice, Facility Service Dog (FD) Kahn, Juanita Maley, PIP Naia, Hunter Watson, PIP Pam, Niki Taylor and PIP Estrella.
The 1st Responder Canine Service Dogs family includes Hunter Watson with PIP Pam, Simone Levendosky with PIP Naia, Alex Diviney with PIP Zinger, Riley Randall with PIP Zeus, Niki Taylor with PIP Estrella. These members of Canine Companions for Independence at University of Mary Washington are raising four of the pups on campus. The dogs live in the dorms with them and attend classes.