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Petco Foundation Invests in Caregiver Canines® Life-Changing Work to Support Therapy Dogs

Toms River (March 3, 2017) – Caregiver Canines®, a program offered through the nonprofit agency Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey, today announced it has been awarded a $5,000 grant investment from the Petco Foundation to support its in-home visiting therapy dog program to reduce loneliness and bring great happiness to area seniors.

Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey is an interfaith nonprofit agency dedicated to providing supportive services to the elderly, veterans, the disabled, and their caregivers, enabling them to live independently and with dignity in their own homes. Since 2009, their therapy dog program, Caregiver Canines®, has matched certified therapy dogs to make weekly home visits to those with dementia and socially isolated individuals who miss the companionship of a dog.

In 2015, Caregiver Canines® formed a strategic partnership with the National Volunteer Caregiving Network and now has expanded to include nonprofit chapters throughout the United States.

This grant was made possible through the Petco Foundation’s annual Helping Heroes fundraising campaign, in partnership with Natural Balance Pet Foods. Each October, during the campaign, customers are invited to donate online and in Petco stores across the country to support the life-changing work of service, therapy and working animals.

The Petco Foundation investment will help Caregiver Canines® recruit and train additional therapy dog volunteer handlers to make home visits to area seniors and caregivers.  All volunteers attend orientation and undergo criminal background checks prior to placement and matches.

“For people who are lifelong dog lovers, the prospect of never being able to have your own dog is a huge loss. Looking forward to a weekly home visit from your very own Caregiver Canine® therapy dog provides a huge boost to body, mind and spirit. Our goal is to stamp out loneliness in the elderly, and this program helps us tremendously,” said Lynette Whiteman, Executive Director.

For more information about Caregiver Canines® or the Petco Foundation, visit www.caregivercanines.org or www.petcofoundation.org.  Join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or by using the hashtag #HelpingHeroes.

Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey
Caregiver Volunteers of Central Jersey is an interfaith, nonprofit agency dedicated to assisting the elderly and their caregivers to remain independent and age in place with dignity and joy.  Over 100o volunteers assist through medical transportation, grocery shopping, friendly visiting and respite programs.  If you would like to learn more about our programs, how to become a volunteer, or know someone who needs our help, please visit www.caregivervolunteers.org , call 732-505-2273 or “LIKE” us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/caregivervolunteers or www.facebook.com/caregivercanines.   Please contact us if you would like us to come to your club or event to do a free presentation about any of our programs.  We’d love to introduce you to our Caregiver Canines ® program and for you to meet our therapy dogs!

About the Petco Foundation
At the Petco Foundation, we believe that every animal deserves to live its best life.  Since 1999, we’ve invested more than $175 million in lifesaving animal welfare work to make that happen. With our more than 4,000 animal welfare partners, we inspire and empower communities to make a difference by investing in adoption and medical care programs, spay and neuter services, pet cancer research, service and therapy animals, and numerous other lifesaving initiatives. Through our Think Adoption First program, we partner with Petco stores and animal welfare organizations across the country to increase pet adoptions. So far, we’ve helped more than 5 million pets find their new loving families, and we’re just getting started. Visit petcofoundation.org to learn more about how you can get involved.