Paws for Change - Brandywine Valley SPCA

Join Our Paws for Change Program


We’ve launched our new Paws for Change animal assisted therapy program starting with a partnership with Baylor Women’s Correctional Institution (BWCI). Paws for Change trains owners and their dogs for therapeutic visits to venues such as correctional facilities, youth centers, assisted living facilities, and schools.

We partnered with the Delaware Department of Correction (DOC) after being awarded one of two animal-assisted therapy contracts through a competitive bidding process to serve DOC facilities. Our Paws for Change teams have been conducting twice-weekly visits at BWCI since September, reaching more than 70 residents each week.

Paws for Change dogs and their handlers go through an initial evaluation followed by an eight-week therapy dog training course conducted by our canine behavior experts. This training is an American Kennel Club-endorsed curriculum for therapy pets. Our Paws for Change roster currently includes forty-two certified therapy dog teams, many of which include dogs adopted from our shelters. Think your dog has what it takes to change lives and become a therapy dog? We’re now accepting sign-ups for the next round of evaluations. Sign your pup up by clicking the button below.

“I didn’t think it was going to be that overwhelming for me when I held him [the animal therapy dog], but now I look forward to it every week. When I hug the dog, I feel like somebody cares, and it gives me hope. Through our treatment program, we are trying to be compassionate and show empathy towards people, but with the trauma we have experienced, it is hard for us to do. With these animals coming in to visit, it does help.” – Inmate at Baylor Women’s Correctional Institution