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About Us

Our Story
PAALS was founded in 2007 to provide service dogs for people with disabilities in South Carolina and parts of North Carolina and Georgia. The only Assistance Dogs International-accredited organization in South Carolina, PAALS is a 501(c)3 charity that provides service dogs at no charge to veterans and other qualified applicants who have autism, disabilities that affect mobility, neurological disabilities, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Our dogs also work in facilities that serve people with disabilities including children's hospitals, special needs classrooms, long term care facilities, counseling services, services that help people who've experienced violence and trauma, and more.

We train each dog for two years at a cost of between $35,000 and $40,000 per dog. We train using only positive reinforcement. Even when a PAALS student does not quite meet the really high standards required for graduation as a service dog or is discovered to have a health issue, we try to place that dog with a family where there is a person with a disability or with a veteran.

In 2019, PAALS was named by the South Carolina Secretary of State as an Angel Charity.  Given to only 10 out of 10,000 South Carolina charities annually, this distinction recognizes wise, careful use of donor funds.


Our Mission
The mission of PAALS is to enrich and empower children and adults with physical, intellectual and emotional disabilities by training service animals and providing animal assisted educational, therapeutic, and recreational activities. Learn more at paals.org.

 
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