High Five Why Give?

Why do I give my time, money, and my heart to VIP Dog Team? Probably for the same reason, you would, I love my son. 22 years ago, on Valentine’s day my son was born with trisomy 21, Down syndrome. I decided right after his diagnosis was confirmed that I would do anything and everything to help him live as happy and healthy of a life as possible.

About 5 years ago we started our search for a service dog for my son. There were NO organizations in Ventura County that train service or therapy dogs. So, we searched further and got on a list for a service dog. We were told the wait time would be about 6 years. This was unacceptable to me so I started doing research and decided to get a puppy and train it to be a service dog for my son.

After that dog didn’t make it through the public access test we got another dog and as we were socializing him I realized my son enjoyed introducing him to people, it gave the needed buffer. He wasn’t talking about himself, he was talking about his dog. It was then that I decided we would train his dog for therapy, not service.

Shortly after I started the nonprofit, VIP Dog Teams. Why? Dogs have an amazing way of connecting with people with special needs. They sense something about a person whether they are sad, scared, or just need a friend. When you have special needs, the general public sees your differences; a dog doesn't. The public hears you talk differently, walk differently, have different fears and needs; a dog knows he loves you, and that's all that matters. So, we train therapy dogs for people with special needs, Down syndrome, Autism, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), stroke and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) patients.
My son and I take our dogs to the Boys & Girls Club as part of our Pup Club for reading/sight word program, to the college nearby to calm students during exams. To the hospital rehabilitation floor and to senior care facilities to spark a memory of a dog from their past and bring a big smile with that fond memory to the elderly.

It's extremely rewarding to see the positive effect on all who meet my son and our dogs. That’s why I give my time and money and my heart to VIP Dog Teams, for the love of my son and yours.

Please give us a high-five so we can continue our work. Donate $5 a month to VIP Dog Teams fill out the donation form to get started.

Thank you,
Nancy Mitchell/President & Founder

High Five

You can give us a high five! HOW?? Donate $5.00 a month to VIP Dog Teams and watch your donation help us train our Jail Therapy dogs. If you like our program give us a HIGH FIVE TODAY!

( you can stop this at any time by calling us at 805 419-0677)

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How Can You Help With R.U.F.F. Road Therapy Dog Program Training?

GIVE us a HIGH FIVE by DONATING $5 a month!!

  • You are helping shelter dogs get a second chance.
  • You are helping inmates with their rehabilitation.
  • You are helping Ventura County to be a safer place (recidivism drops when inmates train therapy dogs).
  • You are helping people with special needs by giving Ventura County a trained therapy dog.


Hi Five Program