Gather your friends, family and dogs for a day of fun! The human-canine bond is truly unique. On our happiest and hardest of days, our dogs love us endlessly. They are our everyday heroes in so many ways. Whether as service dogs, working dogs or pet dogs, there are countless tales of man's best friend doing amazing things. Join the fun at your local DogFest or participate virtually as we celebrate the joy dogs bring to our lives. Registration is free. Fundraising is encouraged. There are sponsorship, volunteer and vendor opportunities too!
When registering, be sure to indicate you are bringing a dog to get your free DogFest dog bandana. Bandana will be mailed to you prier to event day. Then fundraise to qualify for some fun DogFest swag!
DogFest supports the mission of Canine Companions to enhance the lives of people with disabilities by providing expertly trained service dogs free of charge. These dogs make a profound impact through the jobs they do like opening doors, picking up dropped items, alerting to sounds and much more.
DogFest North Central - Bigger than ever!
In 2020 DogFest North Central raised over $260,000 during our first ever virtual event. This year, our goal is to raise $300,000 across our 14-state region. Whether you are in Ohio, Kentucky, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota or west of Pittsburgh or you support one of our graduate teams living in eastern Canada, we invite you to join DogFest North Central to support the Canine Companions mission.
At Canine Companions, the health and safety of our graduates, puppy raisers, volunteers and devoted donors are our top priority. While we have every intention of celebrating with an in-person event, we will continue to offer the opportunity to watch from wherever you are as we broadcast live potions of our event from our new North Central Region campus. (Link will be updated closer to the event.)
Don’t miss out on DogFest North Central. Join the fun!
DogFest is Canine Companions' national signature event, supporting the mission of Canine Companions to enhance the lives of people with disabilities by providing expertly trained service dogs free of charge. These service dogs make a profound impact through the jobs they do like opening doors, picking up dropped items, alerting to sounds and much more. Your participation makes a profound impact.
Our dogs love us endlessly, and the human-canine bond is powerful! Whether as service dogs, working dogs or pet dogs, there are countless tales of our best friends doing amazing things. We invite you to join the fun at your local DogFest or participate virtually as we gather to celebrate the joy dogs bring to our lives. Registration is free. Fundraising is encouraged.
There are sponsorship [LINK], volunteer [LINK] and vendor [LINK] opportunities, too!
Canine Companions transforms the lives of people with disabilities by providing expertly trained service dogs. Our dogs perform practical tasks that enhance independence and reduce reliance on others. They aren't just the eyes and ears, hands and legs of their human partners, they're also goodwill ambassadors and often, our best friends. A student achieves their dreams of attending college. A veteran gets a good night sleep. A patient can endure an additional procedure. Lives are transformed after being matched and working with a Canine Companions service dog.
According to the U.S. Census, nearly 1 in 4 people in the U.S. have a disability. While it costs approximately $50,000 to raise and train every Canine Companions service dog and provide ongoing support to the human-canine team, each dog is provided to the recipient completely FREE of charge. Canine Companions has placed over 6,800 service dogs, but more than 400 people with disabilities are still waiting for a match.
Our service dogs open up new opportunities and spread incredible joy. By raising funds through DogFest, you support our mission and the people we serve. Thank you.
Canine Companions in the North Central region
Meet Lisa and Facility Dog Luna
“The response from our patients has been almost magical to see just how well they’ve taken to her,” shares Lisa, Facility Dog Luna’s handler. Luna began her journey with the Mayo Clinic in November and has had a huge impact in just a short time. “Luna adds a depth to our care we can’t otherwise provide on a physical or emotional level — it’s a sixth dimension of care.” Luna is lending a helping paw around the Mayo Clinic however she can and wherever she is needed. She helps patients work on puzzles by handing them pieces. Her presence reduces stress during therapies. “We’ve been making regular rounds through our cardiac rehab department where Luna will go on walks with patients, and she has participated in exercise programs by bringing lightweight dumbbells to patients while they do their exercises,” Lisa explains. “We also do rounds over in the cancer center where Luna carries a basket of treats for patients. She has been with some end-of-life patients, too.” “It has been incredible so far,” says Lisa. Luna’s work with the Mayo Clinic and Lisa has just begun, and her impact will only continue to grow as she helps patients on their path to recovery with loving eyes, helping paws and a wagging tail. “We’re just getting started.”
Meet Kian and Service Dog Buckeye
In August 2018, Canine Companions puppy Buckeye stole the hearts of the central Ohio community when he joined the NBC4 morning team. After working with his volunteer puppy raiser and then completing Canine Companions professional training, Buckeye is now a service dog for new partner and best friend, Kian. Buckeye has made a huge impact in Kian’s life. He is utilizing his commands and playtime to help Kian with his physical therapy and range of motion. Kian’s (and Buckeye’s) favorite way to do this is to throw a frisbee. Buckeye’s impact isn’t just physical. Kian’s mom shares that Buckeye has made a difference emotionally too. “Buckeye gets up in Kian’s lap and allows him to pet him and love on him. It has always been hard for Kian to have an affectionate relationship with an animal because of his equipment, but Buckeye has changed that.” Kian’s mom also went on to share, “Kian has really shown a whole new side to himself. He is very loving; he has a cute voice that he does when he talks to Buckeye.” Kian and Buckeye have created an amazing bond, and it can be summed up by Kian in three words, “I love him.”
Check back to learn about our generous DogFest sponsors.