All proceeds will go to a Local Veteran Charity; Service Peace Warriors, as well as the Historic Downtown Kennewick Partnership.
This event is our First Annual Show and Shine to give back to the heroes and people in our community that strive to make the Tri-Cities a great place to live. It will take place in Historic Downtown Kennewick on Saturday, September 9th, 2017.
This event will feature a Show & Shine, Poker Walk, Kids Zone, and local food and novelty vendors!
Show & Shine 9am-3pm
Poker Walk 9am-2pm
Kids Zone 9am-3pm
Trophy Ceremony 2:30pm
"Through my own experience with depression, anxiety and complex PTSD I have come to recognize the challenges our veterans have that return home with PTSD. My desire is to share fully trained service dogs with veterans and help them regain the independence and self-reliance that they deserve. PTSD is a very debilitating condition that is not always visible to others. Here at service peace warriors our goal is to give our combat veterans, suffering with PTSD, a new chance at life, at no cost." - Mary-Faith Mattox Founder & President
Service Peace Warriors’ puppies and dogs are handpicked. Many are donated by different breeders while others come from rescues and shelters. We prefer working with dogs under the age of one year so that they will have years of service to give to their veteran. service peace warriors only use’s large breed dogs like German Shepherds, Labradors, Pit Bull crosses, etcetera, for their strength and drive. All our dogs are spayed and neutered. They are also on a strict vaccination and worming schedule. service peace warriors’ dogs only qualify if they are healthy and have a good temperament. Each dog’s individual characteristics play a critical role as well.
Service Peace Warriors’ puppies are raised in foster homes that have gone through our application process. Our puppy raiser’s work closely with us here at service peace warriors in Eltopia, WA and on their own under service peace warriors instructions. Our raiser’s volunteer for up to 15 months with their foster puppy, they take it most places with them to get it well socialized and place him or her in some real-life situations.
Depending on how many dogs we have in training at service peace warriors our dogs will come home at approximately 12 to 15 months old. This is when we start the formal training that each service dog needs in order to do what is asked of it. This is also when our trainers learn about each individual dog and determine which dogs are better suited for what jobs. All of our veteran’s needs are different, our service dogs are primarily for PTSD but can be trained for other things such as standing to help his veteran get up off the floor, or grabbing something for them and other tasks. This training can take up to 4 to 6 months depending on the tasks we are teaching him.
Service Peace Warriors’ dogs and veterans will now be paired according to what each veteran requires. We find this out by completion of veteran’s applications and interviews. This is where we build our teams (Veteran and Dog). Service Peace Warriors training will take place at Service Peace Warriors to start with. Each veteran is held responsible for the time required to train and work with their dog. It is imperative that the veteran and dog spend time and work together to be successful. Each veteran will learn how to work with their dog by learning commands, earning their dogs trust, and of course bonding to each other. After teams are working well with each other we will start working in real-life situations by traveling into town. ALL DOGS WILL BE HOUSED AND TRAINED AT SERVICE PEACE WARRIORS DURING TRAINING.
- Jerrid pictured with Abel -
Veterans will work with their dogs for approximately 2 months. The time required is decided by Service Peace Warriors case by case. On completion of their training with service peace warriors they will take their certification as a team. When they pass their certification test they will go home together as a successful service peace warriors team. From there they will both have a bonded and independent life together with the tools and techniques they have learned with service peace warriors.
Each Veteran and Dog team is required to return to service peace warriors each year for re-certification. Service Peace Warriors maintains ownership of all their service dogs. If, at any time, a veteran is unable to care for and maintain the health and nutrition of their dog it must be returned to Service Peace Warriors.
Please visit us at: www.servicepeacewarriors.org
Mary-Faith Mattox Founder & President Pictured with her service dog SPW Sky.
“She has changed my life”
Having a service dog has changed my life in amazing ways, but there is also a lot of work involved in having her with me constantly. Some days it can be very challenging with people always wanting to pet her and ask questions, when all I want to do is run into the grocery store and be left alone. When we go overnight somewhere she needs her food, bowls, bottled water and of course poop bags. All of this is a commitment to having a service dog, and beginning a live animal that can make mistakes sometimes can be frustrating. It is important to understand that if you have a service dog you will be taking her everywhere. I believe it is a privilege to have her by my side all the time even when I am doing O.K.
Some of you may have disabilities that can be seen, where those of us with just PTSD do not, and we sometimes get a lot of questions about why we need a service dog. Please consider how you will go about some of these circumstances because they can still catch me off guard. And I always remind myself of respecting others, not everyone loves dogs like we do. Some people are afraid or become startled by them when surprised to see a dog come around the corner in the grocery store. When you take home your service peace warriors dog, you will continue to work with him or her for the rest of their service dog life. You will spend 24 hours a day with them building a strong relationship and always learning new way of working with each other.