What We Do

Mutts On A Mission is dedicated to sharing the love and companionship of our dogs with others.  Each team has gone through extensive training and testing to register as a therapy team with their pet.  The scientific research behind the benefits of therapy animals to others is real.  And we see it every day when we work as teams to bring smiles, comfort, and support to our clients.

Supporting Those Who May Be Facing Health Issues

Mutts On A Mission members visit many facilities throughout the west valley each and every week.  These one on one encounters are designed to bring a smile and a little comfort to the clients we visit.  They may be patients in the hospital, patients going through chemotherapy, family caregivers waiting while their loved ones are being treated, people going through mental health and addiction treatment, hospice patients, or people suffering from the chains of dementia or Alzheimer’s. 

Our R.E.A.D. Program

We also support our young people who are not sick but need a hand in their school work.  The statistics are clear.  We have a literacy issue in our country.  Sixty-eight percent of fourth grade children in the United States are reading below the proficiency level.  Mutts On A Mission has joined forces with Intermountain Therapy Animals, based out of Utah, to implement a Reading Education Assistance Dog (R.E.A.D) program right here in the west valley.

We started with one school, Barbara B. Robey Elementary, in Litchfield Park in 2017 and have now expanded the program into other schools in Litchfield Park and Buckeye.

How does R.E.A.D. work? 

Each week a R.E.A.D. team goes to the school and works with the same child for some quality one on one reading time.  The child, who may be struggling with reading for any number of reasons, reads to the dog and receives tutoring from the human part of the team.  The benefits of pairing up a team with the same child every week for some individual reading time is astounding.  The child reads aloud to the dog (and the human) without fear of judgement if they stumble.  Over a very short time the bond that develops between the child and the dog is palpable!  And, since dogs don’t judge, the children gain confidence as their reading skills improve.

How do we know it works?

We work hand in hand with teachers in each school.  After each reading session we debrief with the teacher and discuss how the child did and whether or not they are ready for more.  Reading fluency is measured before, during, and after each semester.  The teachers were amazed, as were we, at how much these children improved over the first semester!  We knew we had to grow our program to reach more children and we continue to do so.

Read about and watch us in the news!

Children learn to read with the help of Therapy Dogs

If you have questions or would like more information, contact us!