Canine Partners of the Rockies (also known as CaPR) is a Colorado nonprofit organization with the mission of positively impacting the lives of Colorado residents with disabilities. CaPR raises, trains and places highly skilled service dogs with individuals who have mobility limiting disabilities and facility dogs with professionals who provide therapeutic services to people with disabilities. Through speaking engagements, CaPR also educates the public about the role assistance dogs play in the lives of people with disabilities.
Who funds CaPR?
CaPR is supported by individual donations, grants, foundations and fundraising activities. CaPR does not receive government funding.
Where does CaPR get its puppies?
As an accredited member of Assistance Dogs International (ADI), CaPR has also joined the ADI American Breeding Cooperative (ABC). Members are able to exchange puppies with other member service and guide dog organizations to continually replenish the population of dogs bred for service work. These wonderful dogs are chosen for the physical characteristics, mental stability and temperaments that make them ideally suited for service and guide dog careers.
At what age are puppies accepted into the CaPR program?
Puppies are accepted between 2-3 months of age.
Who trains the puppies and for how long?
A puppy starts their training with their first volunteer Puppy Raiser (PR) who is responsible for the puppy while it lives in their home. The PR teaches the puppy manners and basic obedience while also attending puppy kindergarten, our puppy class at CaPR, once a week. The PR is also responsible for the cost of raising the puppy (food, vet, toys, etc.) until 8 months of age. The dog then moves to another raiser to start intermediate training, where they will start to learn more cues and behaviors while coming in for class once a week. At around 14 months, the dog moves to their final raiser for advanced training. Where they will come in 3x/week to train with CaPR's trainers and attend class every other week with their puppy raiser. Every PR is provided with a manual and attends on-going classes. To learn more about the training stages, visit our "Their Journey" page.
What type of training methodology does CaPR use?
CaPR is dedicated to using positive reinforcement training methods.
Will the puppy ever spend time in a kennel situation?
Throughout training, CaPR puppies always live in a home environment.
Is it hard to let go of the puppy?
Without question, it is difficult to give up a puppy. Volunteer Puppy Raisers and Advanced Trainers bond strongly with a puppy as part of their effort to help the puppy thrive in a loving and nurturing environment. Nevertheless, there is a great sense of pride and accomplishment when “their” dog is placed in a working partnership.
What happens if the puppy doesn’t finish training as a CaPR Service or Facility Dog?
CaPR attempts to place the dog in another “job” such as drug detection or search and rescue. CaPR only arranges alternate placements with known and reputable organizations. A released dog may also be available for adoption as a pet dog.
Who can get CaPR Service Dogs and Facility Dogs?
CaPR only places dogs with Colorado residents. Mobility Service Dogs are placed with people who have mobility limiting conditions. Facility Dogs are placed with professionals who provide therapeutic intervention services to individuals with disabilities and their families. Descriptions of each type of placement, information about the application process, and application FAQ can be found at our Apply for a Dog page.
How does an Applicant learn to partner with the assistance dog?
Before receiving a dog, an Applicant is provided with recommended reading for study and is encouraged to observe CaPR’s on-going training classes. When an Applicant is matched with an assistance dog, the partnering phase of training begins. It is a combination of hands-on experience with the dog, lectures and self-study. Sessions may be individualized or in group settings.
Why does CaPR place assistance dogs only in Colorado?
First and foremost, there is a great need for service dogs in Colorado. In addition, by limiting the geographical area, CaPR is able to effectively provide the critical follow-up and support services needed to insure the continued success of the partnership.
assistance dogs we don't place
Medical alert (i.e seizures & diabetic alert)
Personal dogs for service
Stability & balance
Psychiatric Disorders (i.e. anxiety, depression)
*We place our dogs with people 14 years of age and older
How can I help?
You can help by making a financial contribution to CaPR and/or by volunteering your time. For more information, please go to the “Donate” and “Volunteer” pages on this Website.