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Service dog training group WAGS looking for more volunteers – WKOW

  • From puppy to caretaker: Becoming a WAGS service dog

    From puppy to caretaker: Becoming a WAGS service dog

    For nearly three decades Wisconsin Academy for Graduate Service Dogs, known as WAGS, has trained and found homes for more than 100 dogs who help people with mobility issues or other illnesses.More >>
    For nearly three decades Wisconsin Academy for Graduate Service Dogs, known as WAGS, has trained and found homes for more than 100 dogs who help people with mobility issues or other illnesses.More >>
  • Toula Tracker

    Toula Tracker

    Watch the progress as Toula the WAGS dog learns new skills.

    Click here to learn more about Toula!

    More >>

    Watch the progress as Toula the WAGS dog learns new skills.

    Click here to learn more about Toula!

    More >>

MADISON (WKOW) -- An organization that raises and trains service dogs in the Madison area is asking for extra help from the community.

Wisconsin Academy for Graduate Service Dogs, known as WAGS, is looking for more volunteers. The organization raises puppies that will someday work alongside those who need a little help getting around.

Working as a trainer is a time commitment but trainers say it's a worthwhile experience when you see the client matched up with a dog that can help.

"We really need people who can make that commitment," says Sarah Sirios, program director. "The more volunteers we have, the more dogs we can having training, and the more dogs we can actually place out there with people who need them."

WAGS held its annual Fall Fundraiser Sunday afternoon at Union South. At that event, WKOW employee Jesi Hartman was named 2014 Outstanding WAGS Volunteer. Sirios says Jesi's hard work spreading the word about the organization on Facebook and WKOW's Toula Tracker page has made a difference.

Sirios says trainers don't need a lot of experience coming in, the organization will train volunteers to teach dogs what they need to know.

Visit the WAGS website for details on how you can get involved.

Visit the Toula Tracker at WKOW.com to learn more about Jesi's journey with Toula, who recently moved on to the next step with a different trainer. Jesi is now working with Teal, a dog that is now in her second year of training.

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