K9's 4 Kids

The K9’s 4 Kids Program gives children who are experiencing trauma a chance to love and be loved by a trained therapy dog and experience normalcy in a stressful environment. A dog facilitates an acceptable emotional connection for youth who have a hard time connecting with others.

A therapy dog team includes a dog, a handler, and a companion volunteer – typically a CASA volunteer.  Our teams visit the Juvenile Detention Facility every Friday afternoon to visit with probation youth, and to the Koinonia Emergency Placement homes every Tuesday to visit kids who have recently been detained from their families due to abuse or neglect.

The program is very popular and to expand it to transitional housing programs and other sites, we’re looking for people who have a trained dog to join us. If you are interested in participating in the K9’s 4 Kids program, please follow these steps:

  • Certify your dog with either a good citizen certificate or as a certified pet therapy dog. We can help you with this process!
  • Attend an Orientation or meet with someone who is currently volunteering with K9’s 4 Kids Program. Meetings can be done in person or over the phone.
  • Complete our Volunteer Application Form.
  • Visit our Child Advocates of Placer County office to fill out forms including background check authorization, confidentiality and mandated reporting, pay $30 background fee, and complete fingerprinting (not necessary for current CASAs or Mentors).
  • Schedule an observation without your dog.
  • Introduce your dog to one of our current volunteers and complete a one-hour training.
  • Shadow a current K9’s 4 Kids volunteer with your dog.

For more information, contact Program Supervisor Jose Huizar at jose@casaplacer.org or call (530) 887-1006.