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 Happy Spring from Next Step Service Dogs!

We have been busy the past few months here at Next Step Service Dogs training new dogs and welcoming new members! Since our last newsletter, we've certified four new teams! 

In addition to our training, we've also been busy at work on our website - Check out the new look here!

Thank you to all the local businesses who have helped us raise money by hosting events and donating a portion of their proceeds. Our most recent fundraiser was hosted by Mike Hess Brewing in North Park!

Make sure to join us at Mike Hess in Mira Mesa for our next fundraiser June 22nd @ 6pm!

A special thank you to Veteran's United for their generous donation! 
Veteran's United loan specialists are industry experts on VA mortgage eligibility and qualification guidelines. They help educate service members and veterans about their options and provide resources to assist them in home buying. 
to our newly certified teams!
Kyle & Leo
Kyle came to us with Leo prior to his acceptance into the program to see if Leo, his pet dog, could be trained for service.  Kyle, due to allergies, needed a hypoallergenic dog.   Leo was shy, unmotivated and pretty much just liked to be touched.  We worked with Kyle, he went home and he executed it.  After a month or so, Leo was temperament-tested for the NSSD program and he passed with flying colors.  Again, not easy to make that conversion from a pet dog to a service dog (especially with two young daughters at home) but Kyle and his family worked hard and made it happen.  They are a special team.
Phil & Sabre
Sabre was Phil's pet German Shepherd and is still very young.  To take a pet dog and train it to service dog standards is no easy task and Phil did an amazing job.  A German Shepherd comes with challenges of its own and Phil did the work.  Special thanks to our Orange County trainer,  Jeff Tessoro!
Sandie& Jazz
Sandie is one our Senior Trainers and, as many of you know, Ziggy's teammate.  Ziggy is moving on in age and Jazz has joined the team as Ziggy enters in to his next chapter as a pet.    Jazz began with us as a puppy and to this day still maintains that spirit.  He may be an adolescent but he has the work skills of an adult dog.   He's a poodle and he rules!
Ally & Bindy
What a match made in heaven!   Ally is one of our first responders in the NSSD program and when she met Bindy it was a done deal!  Together they have worked through many different phases of Ally's journey and Bindy never ceases to amaze her.  You will find Bindy on occasion sporting a bright pink bow!
Gene & Molly
Molly and Gene are a heart warming story.  Molly  came to us in December of 2014 as an energetic young pup. She was quick to learn, quick to move and quick to love.  In June of 2016 Molly found her teammate and went to work.  Unfortunately, in December of 2016 Molly (having fun at dog beach) suffered not just one ACL tear but two.  She would need surgery in both knees.  Very sadly Molly's teammate had to release her.  She just would not be fit for service long term.  This was one of the most selfless - kindest things that could be done for Molly.  However, upon the release we assured her teammate that we would do our best in finding a place were Molly could continue to serve the Veteran community.  It was fate - Wounded Warrior Homes and Gene welcomed her with open arms.  Molly was placed there after her first surgery and Gene rehabbed her for her second. She is now fully recovered and working hard as a Facility dog with the WWH in Vista.  
Make sure to mark your calendars for our Team Graduation on Saturday, October 14, 2017! 

In the News

Some of our dogs (and members!) were featured in San Diego Home/Garden Magazine! Check out the article about Next Step Service Dogs here. (Pages 122-123)
The Aspire Center in San Diego now allows service dogs!
The Aspire Center provides temporary housing for Veterans who do not need inpatient care but would benefit from rehabilitation services. The center includes elements of mental health, vocational and occupational therapies for those Veterans who need them. For more information, please visit: ASPIRE SAN DIEGO
 Two teams shared some doggie love with the foster teens at Casa de Amparo, a residential campus for teens who have been traumatized by child abuse or neglect.
The teens made lunch (hotdogs, of course) for the veterans, and dog treats for their dogs. In turn, the vets shared some of their personal experiences and dog training tricks with the girls. 

Some of our dogs...
Wendy & Randy 
Certified in Boise, Idaho
Stella loves the great outdoors, especially the
water. Besides training for her Access Test, Stella has
been training hard on retrieve, speak on command and
“secure”. Secure is a cue where she will circle her handler
to create a “secure” personal bubble for when they are
feeling uneasy.
Fun night of training at the San Diego Zoo!
James & Bruno are one of our new teams to be paired together. 
Check out BringFido a website and app for your phone that lets you check out pet friendly places when you're traveling! 


We are in need of good homes for our dogs in training! We are looking for volunteers who can commit to weekly training sessions and in-home care for our dogs while they're waiting to be paired with a veteran in need. Please email us for more information about how you can help! 


Don't forget to link your Amazon and Mogl accounts and a percentage of your purchases will go towards training and hiring veterans

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921 S. Andreasen Drive
Escondido, CA  92029

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Next Step Service Dogs · 12463 Rancho Bernardo Road, #574 · San Diego, CA 92128 · USA

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