Basic Organization Information
DOGS FOR DIABETICS
- Also Known As:
dogs4diabetics, Dogs4Diabetics, D4D, Dogs for Diabetics, Inc.
- Physical Address:
- Web URL:
- Blog URL:
- NTEE Category:
D Animal related
D60 Other Services
G Disease, Disorders, Medical Disciplines
G40 Diseases of Specific Organs
E Health—General & Rehabilitative
E60 Health Support Services
- Ruling Year:
- How This Organization Is Funded:
Individuals - 52% of Revenues - $97,768
Corporations - 37% of Revenues - $69,466
Foundations - 6% of Revenues - $12,000
Provide quality medical alert assistance dogs to insulin-dependent diabetics through programs of training, placement, and follow-up services; and to,
Develop, promote and advocate standards of quality, performance, support and disclosure for all medical assistance dog teams.
Our Vision includes the enhancement of our own work through evaluating, researching, and monitoring our dogs and clients to continuously improve our processes and the outcomes for our clients. We also hope that by advocating high standards for all medical assistance dog providers, medical assistance dogs will become more accepted, respected and available around the world.
Mr. Mark Ruefenacht
Mr. Ruefenacht has been recognized by Bark Magazine as one of the 100 most influential trainers in the dog world in 2010. In 2012 & 2013, he was awarded the Bronze and Silver Jefferson Awards from the American Institute for Public Service for his work with Dogs for Diabetics. Mr. Ruefenacht is a leader in the field of Metrology, or scientific measurement, working with his 100+ family firm, Heusser Neweigh, as well as contracting with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). His primary specialty in these areas is forensic metrology, where he focuses measurements used in forensic science. He contracts with all major National, State and local law enforcement agencies, including the DEA, FBI and others.
Mr. Ruefenacht is a volunteer and provides all his services to Dogs for Diabetics, without compensation.
Mr. Ruefenacht has both a personal and family history with diabetes.
D4D has developed an additional means for insulin-dependent diabetics to assist in better management of their blood sugars and avoid the dangerous effect of hypoglycemia. Our dogs can scent the chemical changes occurring from rapid blood sugar drops approximately 15 to 30 minutes before it is measured by a glucose meter. This allows the diabetic to treat themselves before they ever suffer the symptoms of hypoglycemia. The dogs provide this service both day and night and in all types of locations. They are amazing in the work they perform.
Board of Directors
Highest Paid Employees & Their Compensation
Highest Paid Employee data is not available for this organization.
Client/Dog Team Training
Diseases, Disorders & Medical Disciplines
- Population Served:
Disabled, General or Disability Unspecified
D4D training of service dogs to identify the scent associated with dropping blood sugar is one element of the program. The second is to train insulin-dependent diabetics to work with a service animal. The third is to train the service dogs and their teammate to work together in a reliable and consistent fashion. The process of training the dog can take up to 3 months, and training the client and dog together to a proven level of reliability can take from 4 months to one year. The aggregate cost to train a dog/client team is $10,000
Program Long-Term Success:
As of July 2010, D4D has successfully trained and place over 80 dogs with insulin-dependent diabetic clients. Those clients consistently report positive improvement in their physical and emotional health, with more confidence in their tighter insulin-therapy. Individuals have reported improvements in their vision, wherein they have previously been subjected to multiple laser treatments for retinopthy, which have now been discontinued due to the tighter blood sugar control, aided by their assistance dog.
Program Short-Term Success:
D4D clients report numerous instances of the dogs alerting them of the on-set of hypoglycemia, when they were totally unaware of the rapid change occurring, allowing them to treat the low blood sugar before they became symptomatic and needed outside assistance. These dogs have assisted caregivers, by alerting them of clients who have gone into a non-responsive hypoglycemic unconscious state while sleeping, allowing the caregiver to give aid additional aid to the diabetic.
Program Success Monitored by:
D4D obtains reports from its clients on a weekly basis through the initial placement period, up to 1 year, of the dog/client teams efforts in providing alerts of low blood sugars. The team is not graduated until they reach a required level of consistent performance in all venues. After the team has graduated, all teams are recertified annually, by again providing a report of low blood sugars and alerts, as well as through a recertification class.
Program Success Examples:
Parents of child diabetics report more confidence in their nightly monitoring of their childrens blood sugar, with the dog alerting them of any blood sugar drops that occur between their night testing. Parents of college-age diabetics report more ease of mind, knowing that their son or daughter has a companion that will warn them of the on-set of a hypoglycemic episode in their dorm room or classroom, as they leave home and live independently for the first time. All clients report on the confidence they recieve from the assistance of their medical alert dog.
Impact Summary from the Nonprofit
Whether than simply wait for a cure for diabetes, D4D provides a means for diabetics to help prevent the acute, debilitating and life-threatening effect of hypoglycemia. D4D's intention is to provide insulin-dependent diabetics with another means to increase their confidence in their insulin therapy, and thereby improve their overall health and mitigate the long term consequences of diabetes. Our dogs provide assistance to their diabetic companions 24/7/365, with non-judgemental support and alerts as to their rapidly changing blood glucose levels.