General FAQs

What types of dogs does BluePath provide?

BluePath trains and places service dogs with families with children with autism. With the exception of a nominal equipment fee, BluePath dogs and lifetime follow-up support are provided free of charge.  We work with dogs possessing very specific health and temperament traits; we do not train pets for work as service dogs.  Visit our applicant page to learn whether a BluePath dog could be a good fit for your family.  For information on other types of service dogs, we recommend visiting Assistance Dogs International.  

How does an autism service dog work?

Many children with autism exhibit bolting tendencies, which can make trips outside the home a frightening proposition. An autism service dog works alongside parents or caregivers to keep a child safe. The dog is connected to the child via a specially designed tether system, and the dog is trained to “anchor” in response to a child bolting.  This immediate, emotionless reaction keeps the child safe – and often helps to reduce or eliminate the bolting behavior.

What happens to the dogs that don’t make it as service dogs?

Dogs that are not able to work as service dogs are offered back to the puppy raisers or long-term fosters at no charge.  If these volunteers are unable to provide a forever home, the dog may be considered for public adoption at a fee.  Learn more about adopting a BluePath released dog.    

What is the prevalence of autism today?

Currently, more than 3.5 million Americans live with an autism spectrum disorder. It is the fastest growing developmental disability in the United States, with a dramatic increase in diagnoses from 2000 (1 in 150) to today (1 in 59.)  -Autism Society

Why dogs?

Scientific studies confirm the transformative nature of the human – canine bond, and as a result, animal assisted therapies have grown dramatically. For children with autism, the comfort and companionship of a well-trained dog can serve as the catalyst for remarkable changes in sleeping, eating and social behaviors.

What makes BluePath special?

Our professional team has a high level of understanding and knowledge of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), as well as demonstrated success in the breeding, care, training and placement of autism service dogs. We employ a thoughtful matching process with resources tailored to each individual and we have an unwavering commitment to deliver personalized service that surpasses expectations.