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Out and About: Hawaii's Hawaii Fi-Do

Out and About: Hawaii's Hawaii Fi-Do

Oahu-based Hawaii Fi-Do trains assistance dogs to offer physical, psychological, and therapeutic support for people who face the daily challenges of life with a disability (other than blindness) and is the only facility of its type on the island. Dogs are individually trained for two years to do work or perform necessary tasks – all pups get basic obedience and socialization lessons along with personalized training to perform such tasks as opening and closing doors, finding the phone, pulling a manual wheelchair, and even to alert their handlers and respond to different sounds.

Along with providing companion dogs to people who need them, Hawaii Fi-Do also offers a special S.T.A.R. (student teaching animal responsibility) program training and using at risk youth to work with the dogs and educate the public about the roles and rights of service dogs as well as a "Read to Willie Program," the first and only reading program in the state where reluctant young readers are motivated to read to certified therapy dogs.

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CanadianInVA CanadianInVA 9 years
What a great company. Love the name!
king's-queen king's-queen 9 years
There is an organization in Massachusetts called NEADS that does very similar work. We got our cat from them (they have a no-kill shelter associated with the dog program). I was also working as a children's librarian in MA, and we worked with NEADS one summer as part of the Summer Reading Program. To be in the presence of these dogs is an amazing experience. I've never seen such a large group of kids be so respectful as they were when we had some puppies in the training program visit the library. And when the kids got to read to the puppies, the love that filled that room was so intense. Organizations like these really do amazing work!
Dollylo Dollylo 9 years
We have something like this in France and that's really a good idea! There's no better way to feel good! ;) Sharing some special time with pets is a great medication! ;)
jennifer76 jennifer76 9 years
Wow! What an amazing program all around. And what a great name. :D
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