All over the country chapters of the Dog Scouts of America are helping dogs become well-trained scouts, while also teaching their owners to become responsible pet owners. The Dog Scouts of America’s mission is “To improve the lives of dogs, their owners, and society through humane education, positive training and community involvement.”
Dog Scouts of America was established in 1995 in Northern Michigan as a non-profit organization by Lonnie Olsen. Today there are troops all over the country. A dog becomes a scout by earning their first badge for basic obedience called the Dog Scout badge. Once a dog becomes a scout they have the potential to earn over 60 badges. There are badges for agility, obedience, backpacking, biking, community service, therapy dog and many more. Many of the badges reinforce the importance of the owner properly training their dog.
“We help the dog; the dog helps us,” said Troop 206 Co-Leader Kristy Copp. “And we help the community by becoming responsible and showing other people in the community what responsible pet ownership is all about.”
The Dog Scouts of America is not just about training your dog, like all other scout programs community service is an important aspect of the program. Troop 206 recently worked with the Chico Police Mounted Patrol to help raise money for the fire department. The money helped the fire department get pet oxygen masks.
There are currently troops in 26 states and you can find a troop near you on the Dog Scouts of America website. If there is not Dog Scouts of America troop in your area you can start your own and the website gives you details on how to do so.