Today’s warriors return from the front lines with complex challenges; many grapple with physical disabilities, traumatic brain injuries, and PTSD. In these cases, a well-trained service dog is invaluable, increasing veterans’ independence and helping them adjust to civilian life. Hero Dogs raises, trains, and provides exceptional service dogs to DC-area veterans and first responders. This intensive process takes three years to complete: from raising the puppies (supported by 100+ volunteers) to providing intensive service training (conducted over 6–8 months by professional trainers) to placing and supporting the new veteran/service dog team... all provided without charge. Each dog is trained to meet its owner’s needs — whether learning to open doors, helping with balance, or seeking assistance in emergencies. Hero Dogs also trains facility dogs for placement in hospitals, clinics, and schools. An investment here means independence, confidence … and companionship.

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Awards & Recognition



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Budget (FY2023)

  • $3 million or higher
  • The current budget for Hero Dogs, Inc. is: $1 million to $3 million
  • $500k to $1 million
  • Less than $500k

Catalogue charities range in size from $100,000 to $3 million. This graphic indicates the budget range of the organization featured here. If you see an organizational budget above the $3 million mark, that is because the featured charity has grown in size since it first appeared in the Catalogue. We proudly present on our website the work of these "growth" charities.

About Spur Local

Each year 150+ community advocates review applicants on the basis of governance, equity, and impact. Each featured nonprofit has been successfully site visited and its financials given the thumbs up. Spur Local charges no fees and raises funds separately to support its work. Since 2003, it has raised over $57 million for nonprofits across the Greater Washington region.

Spur Local looks to friends like you to keep our services independent and entirely free of charge. Consider a small contribution to Spur Local to cap off your gift and help the causes you care about get the full support they deserve!

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