Support K9 Program

At Guide Dogs of the Desert, each dog is evaluated to determine if being a Guide Dog is the right career choice. For some dogs, an alternative career path is a better fit to their skill sets and personalities. For those dogs, our Support K9 program is another option.

From standing alongside law enforcement or emergency responders in the face of adversity, to connecting with the communities they serve, these dogs become a part of their placement agency and team.

What is the role of a Support K9?

Support K9’s are placed with law enforcement agencies, emergency response organizations or other community pillars with the goal of offering a supportive, approachable, non-judgmental team member. These dogs come alongside the organization they’ve been placed with in order to help further their mission. Each dog is trained to offer a therapeutic presence for professionals or those they serve.  A trained Support K9 can have unforgettable impacts that last a lifetime.

How does Guide Dogs of the Desert support agencies with placed dogs?

Follow up and support are an important piece to the success of the Support K9 program. In addition to availability for one on one contact to answer questions or provide technical assistance, Guide Dogs of the Desert offers several ways to stay engaged in connected with our Support K9 team.

  • Sample Department Policies are provided during the placement process to help your team prepare for a new Support K9.
  • Updated training opportunities are offered to placement departments / locations.
  • An Annual Support K9 conference is held for networking

How to get a Support K9 or learn more

For more information on the Support K9 program, or to request a placement, contact Program Manager & Retired Police Captain, Dr. Coby Webb (

Guide Dogs of the Desert offers a unique experience. Each Support K9 has been given the training foundation of a dog preparing for service work. This gives each dog a distinct advantage and aptitude for success in this role.

Learn more about the fundamental facets of training that make these dogs exemplary Support K9 candidates.

Generations of Guide Dog Lineage

Each dog in our program is bred for work. Temperament, health and trainability are evaluated to support the success of each placement, and we seek to ensure the wellness of each breeding dog.

Socialization & Exposure

Each dog has been socialized and exposed from a young age to an array of settings. This gives dogs a sound countenance when out and about, as well as predictable reactions and responses.

Fifty Years of Success

Since 1972, Guide Dogs of the Desert has placed service dogs with proven success. These empowering partnerships serve to positively impact human lives, with irreplicable benefits.

Support K9s have several different roles they fulfill. Whether providing support for the mental wellness of a team, or nurturing community relationships, these exemplary canine citizens are sure to become unforgettable members of any team!

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