We are a St. Paul, MN nonprofit training service dogs for veterans and first responders.

Your donation will be used to train service dogs to empower our nation's heroes.    

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Service dogs in training practicing down

 Your gift saves lives--and we prove it.

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Your donation brings independence to:


Veterans with multiple disabilities

Combat veterans

“I trained with Pawsitivity Service Dogs in 2019 and received the trained service dog, Daniel, an adult black Labrador Retriever, to partner with in support of my PTSD received during combat in my service with the U.S. Army during OIF I and OEF VII. 

Pawsitivity not only trained Daniel to meet my needs but trained me as well to work with Daniel, communicate with him, understand my rights and be a responsible and proactive service animal owner. Pawsitivity embodies all of the seven Army core values; especially honor, integrity and selfless service. They are some of the kindest, hardworking and generous folks I have ever had the pleasure of spending time with.  

I enthusiastically recommend the 501(c)(3) nonprofit Pawsitivity Service Dogs to veterans who need a service dog.”



Emotional support dogs for first responders


First responders

“We are incredibly grateful to Pawsitivity for providing us with Toby, our exceptional therapy dog. Toby has had a profound impact on our police department, offering comfort and emotional support during challenging times. His presence has been invaluable in providing relief to both victims and officers during emergencies, helping to strengthen our community. Toby's gentle and playful demeanor brings joy to everyone he meets. We cannot thank Pawsitivity enough for this wonderful addition to our team and most importantly to our family.

Thank you!”



We also work with veteran families

Veterans and first responders who have children with severe disabilities 

Violet has autism and will never be able to live on her own. Her stepfather is a first responder, and her father is a U.S. Army combat veteran. When Violet's social worker suggested a service dog to assist her, they turned to Pawsitivity Service Dogs for Veterans. We have experience empowering veterans, first responders, and children with special needs.

We trained Sunshine, an English Cream Golden Retriever, specifically for Violet. Our extensive history includes helping children with severe disabilities, such as autism, blindness, deafness, and epilepsy.

With your help, we can provide service dogs to other veterans' children like Violet. These dogs offer vital assistance, helping veterans' children with disabilities lead more independent and fulfilling lives.  


From rescued to rescuing

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you rescue dogs?


We rescue dogs from shelters, accept donated puppies, and work with veterans who have their own dogs.

When did you start Pawsitivity? What disabilities do you train for?

Pawsitivity was founded in 2012, achieved 501(c)(3) status in 2014, and our EIN is 47-144663. We train service dogs for U.S. military veterans with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), missing limbs, no or low vision, deafness, seizures, and more. We also train service dogs to help children of veterans and veterans with disabilities who weren't in combat.

How much does it cost to raise and train a service dog?

While we provide service dogs at no cost to the veteran, it takes $25,000 to raise and train a PTSD service dog for a veteran. This cost was determined by Congress in a 3-year study which proved that PTSD service dogs transform the lives of veterans and reduce suicide ideation.

How long is the process?

Two years.

Pawsitivity trains service dogs for veterans with PTSD and other disabilities for up to two years. Six months of the service dog training process is spent directly with the veteran, which is crucial as it allows the handler to learn how to keep up the training of their service dog (although we also provide lifelong support). Working with the veteran and dog together can be a life-changing experience for both of them because they become a team that can rely on each other for support.

The training process is rigorous, but it is worth it for the life-changing benefits that it provides to both the veteran and the service dog.

If the veteran can’t keep the dog for some reason, will you take the dog back?


If a veteran can no longer care for their dog for any reason, we will do everything in our power to receive the dog back and find it a loving home. We will not leave a loyal companion behind.

What do you do if the dog fails out?

Career change!

Not every dog is cut out to be a service dog for a veteran. But that doesn't mean they don't have a purpose. For those dogs who don't make the cut, we offer a second chance at a career as a therapy dog or a loving family pet. We call these dogs “Career Change Dogs”, and they are just as important as the dogs who go on to become service dogs. They provide comfort and companionship to those in need, and they deserve a second chance at happiness.


Give with confidence.


Platinum Transparency Charities Review Council Annual Report Impact Evaluation


Together, we can empower our nation's warriors.

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