Keefe II, the Canine Companion, Receives His Training in Jamaica Plain

Canine Companions for Independence – a national non-profit organization providing highly trained assistance dogs for children, adults and veterans with disabilities, is proud to announce that Kathy Clair-Hayes and her family of Jamaica Plain recently began raising an assistance dog in-training for Canine Companions for Independence. 

Puppy Keefe II is a Lab/Golden Retriever cross who will one-day know over 40 professional commands, and be matched with a person with disabilities.

Volunteer Puppy Raisers are critically important to the work of Canine Companions for Independence.  Puppy Raisers take the pups into their home at eight weeks of age, raising them, teaching them basic commands and socialization skills.  The socialization is perhaps the most important, because the dogs need to be exposed to any and all types of surroundings.   With the special yellow capes they wear, these dogs are permitted to go to many public areas that family pets aren’t allowed.   When the dogs reach about a year and a half old, they are returned to the Canine Companions for Independence regional headquarters in Medford, New York. They begin 6 months of professional training with the organizations nationally renowned instructors, before they are matched with a child, adult or veteran with disabilities. 

For more information about becoming a Puppy Raiser, visit or call 1-800-572-BARK.

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