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The paws4people® Mission

paws4people® is a 501c3 public charity founded in 1999 by then 12-year old Kyria Henry and her father, Terry Henry, a Veteran who has battled with Chronic/Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Moral Injury since 1987. The Henrys’ purpose was to use dogs to help people transform lives.

Headquartered in Wilmington, North Carolina, paws4people has over 600 highly trained Assistance Dogs, Facility Dogs, and Emotional Support Dogs placed Dogs in 26 states with nationwide consideration.

An Assistance Dog is a Service Dog, whose training is customized to mitigate a physical, neurological, and/or psychiatric disability of an individual (Client), and is placed to spend his/her working career assisting that individual.

A Facility Dog is trained and placed to spend his/her working career with a professional (Handler) and provide animal assisted interventions in educational, health care, emergency, or social service settings.

An Emotional Support Dog is trained and placed to provide comfort to an individual at home and other dog-friendly environments.

Each paws4people Assistance Dog and Facility Dog has one or more certifications providing support in areas such as mobility and psychiatric service, educational and rehabilitative assistance, and therapeutic visitation. Together, these Dogs have made more than 1,000,000 therapeutic contacts.

paws4people specializes in training customized Assistance Dogs for two general groups: children and adolescents with physical, neurological, psychiatric, and/or emotional disabilities; and Veterans and Service Members with PTSD, Traumatic Brain Injury, Military Sexual Trauma, and Moral Injury.

Each paws4people working Team is the result of a two-year process involving 1,000s of hours of training the Dog, the Client or Handler, and the Team, at an average total cost to the organization of $61,000. 

All paws4people Dogs are provided for free to Clients and Handlers.

The organization provides certification, insurance, and support for each working Team for the duration of the Team's career. 

Learn more about paws4people® at

4health® Sponsored Dog & Client Teams

Will Craig, USMC Veteran

Will was a Staff Sergeant in the US Marine Corps. While deployed, Will had a near death experience and witnessed the deaths of friends and civilians. He is diagnosed with PTS, which results in his reliving traumatic events and causes him to isolate from his family and friends.

Will met paws4people's JETTY in March 2017! JETTY helps Will by interrupting flashbacks and nightmares, and anchoring him when he is anxious. JETTY assists Will to lead a more independent life by accompanying him in public places. He has made Will’s life more enjoyable by helping him to feel closer to his family and friends.

Ava Smith

Ava is a 14-year old diagnosed with neurological condition that results in her inability to walk and having very limited use of her arms. The suddenness of the onset and severity of her disability causes Ava severe anxiety.

paws4people's DAPHNE chose Ava in July 2016, and changed her life in ways that Ava could only imagine! DAPHNE provides mobility assistance to Ava, retrieves and carries items for Ava, and alerts and calms Ava when she becomes anxious. DAPHNE is Ava's best friend in good times and bad.

paws4people® Videos

4health® is proud to support paws4people, which feeds 4health® grain free food to the Puppies and Dogs in its Assistance Dog Training Program.

Come along with paws4people Assistance Dogs In-Training as they visit Tractor Supply!

4health® is the Official Dog Food Sponsor of paws4people®


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