YOUTH DOG PROGRAM
Winnebago County has seen a rise in death-by-suicide among our children/teens, as well as a substantial change in how many are turning to drugs, alcohol and other controlled substances to cope. In order to help fight this trend Circle of Change, with funding from the Winnebago County Community Mental Health Board, has launched the Youth Dog Program for youth ages 9-19 years old.
THE "WHO" + THE "HOW".
Circle of Change (COC) serves those suffering with mental health issues (i.e. Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, Suicidal Ideations, etc.) through FREE dog training/handling classes designed to renew/build a sense of community, and to increase self-reliance, confidence and trust.
The pups utilized in the program are "loaned" to us by Ms. Cristy's client- base for the duration of each class period. If a teen wants to bring their own dog to class, they must clear the safety requirements of the COC program. Youth handler must be a minimum of 13-years-old. Dog owners must submit written proof of Rabies, DA2PPV and Bordetella vaccinations. Rabies vaccination is required for puppies over 4 months of age. We strongly encourage monthly heartworm and flea+/- tick preventative. In most instances, we will also do a meet-and-greet prior to classes begin to screen for any potential safety issues.