About Us

The NEADS mission is to provide independence to people who are deaf or have a disability through the use of canine assistance.

NEADS (National Education for Assistance Dog Services, also known as Dogs for Deaf and Disabled Americans), is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that was established in 1976. Our assistance dogs become an extension of their handlers and bring freedom, physical autonomy and relief from social isolation to their human partners.

Our Services

NEADS has trained over 1500 assistance dog teams since 1976. NEADS is accredited by Assistance Dog International, the internationally recognized governing body that establishes industry standards and practices. NEADS offers a wide spectrum of assistance dog services, including:

Deaf & Hearing Loss

Our hearing dogs are specially trained to alert human partners to the source of a sound.

Combat Veterans

Our Canines for Combat Veterans program is designed to help the growing population of wounded veterans.

Physical Disability

Our service dogs assist people by performing everyday tasks like picking up dropped items, opening doors, and more.

Classroom, Therapy & Ministry

Our uniquely trained dogs engage and inspire a practitioner's community.

Children with a Disability

Service dogs for children perform many of the same tasks they can for adults, and offer our younger clients greater independence.

Children on the Autism Spectrum

Social dogs help a child on the autism spectrum feel calmer and more confident.

- See more at: http://neads.dl-dev.com/assistance-dogs#sthash.JrRVr0KY.dpuf
  • Deaf & Hearing Loss
    Our hearing dogs are specially trained to alert human partners to the source of a sound.
  • Combat Veterans
    Our Canines for Combat Veterans program is designed to help the growing population of wounded veterans.
  • Physical Disability
    Our service dogs assist people by performing everyday tasks like picking up dropped items, opening doors, and more.
  • Classroom, Therapy & Ministry
    Our uniquely trained dogs engage and inspire a practitioner's community.
  • Children with a Disability
    Service dogs for children perform many of the same tasks they can for adults, and offer our younger clients greater independence.
  • Children on the Autism Spectrum
    Social dogs help a child on the autism spectrum feel calmer and more confident.

Our Campus

NEADS’s national headquarters is located on 18 acres of protected wetlands in Princeton, MA, a rural setting close to Worcester in Central Massachusetts.

How We're Funded

NEADS receives no federal government funding and relies on the support of individuals, foundations, corporations, service organizations, bequests and workplace campaigns.

Quick Facts

  • NEADS has trained over 1500 assistance dog teams since the organization’s inception in 1976.
  • NEADS trains a larger variety of assistance dogs than any other program in the US.
  • Inmates at 10 New England prisons help by training 90-95% of our assistance dogs.
  • NEADS established the first partnership with a prison solely dedicated to the training of assistance dogs for people who are deaf or have hearing loss (2010).
  • NEADS was the first assistance dog organization to develop a program specifically geared to Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans, Canines for Combat Veterans (2006).
  • NEADS was the first assistance dog organization invited to Walter Reed Hospital to give an in-service about how assistance dogs can help wounded veterans (2005).
  • NEADS is the oldest continuing hearing dog program in the country.
  • Our assistance dogs include both animal shelter rescues and puppies that are donated or sold to us by breeders.