When I first learned about Service Dogs, I thought other people needed them more than me. But after developing Multiple Sclerosis (MS) a few years ago, I wanted to get my confidence and independence back. I wanted my kids to be kids, not caretakers, and my husband to be able to travel for work without worrying.

I took the plunge, and my PAWS Dog IVEY changed all of our lives.


PAWS was founded in 1979 and is one of the largest and most respected Service Dog organizations in the world—and the best-kept secret in West Michigan! They started with a simple goal: to train one dog for one Deaf person, so he and his wife knew when their new baby cried. Forty-four years later, PAWS has custom-trained over 3,200 Hearing Dogs, Seizure Response Dogs, Service Dogs for Children with Autism, and general Services Dogs like IVEY that can learn up to 30 different tasks.

It takes two years and $36,000 for dogs like IVEY to go from newborn puppies to fully certified Service Dogs. While they are invaluable, they are not covered by medical insurance policies. PAWS operates almost entirely through the generosity of people like you.

Out of the kindness of their heart, people I may never meet gave me IVEY. I wouldn’t have my independence, my confidence, my safety, and my smile back without them. IVEY gave me all of that, and they gave me IVEY.

Will you join me in supporting PAWS so that the next Client on the waiting list can receive their very own IVEY? Make your donation below to join the PAWS Family today!