Community Outreach Programs
LEAD, Pet Savvy and Brightening Lives
In addition to our publicly available humane education programs, the OHS has three programs that are only available to specific groups in our community.
Leadership Education with Adolescents and Dogs (LEAD)
Research supports that a relationship with an animal addresses some of the psychological needs of troubled individuals in a non-threatening manner. The OHS runs Leadership Education with Adolescents and Dogs (LEAD) in conjunction with social service organizations that treat at-risk youth.
This animal-assisted initiative promotes the human-animal bond while encouraging youth participants to develop personal responsibility, empathy and self-esteem. It also increases the adoptability of harder-to-place shelter dogs through basic obedience training and socialization.
The OHS offers Pet Savvy workshops in partnership with the City of Ottawa Spay/Neuter Clinic to targeted communities within our city. The program offers practical and interactive workshops on preventative health care for pets to adult pet owners receiving subsidized veterinary care from the Spay/Neuter Clinic.
Brightening Lives Animal Visits Program
The Brightening Lives Animal Visits Program is a community service that began in 1986. Volunteers take temperament-tested, outgoing and friendly animals to hospitals, retirement residences and other long-term care facilities where they meet and interact with the residents. Some of these residents may not receive many visitors otherwise, so this program truly does help to brighten their lives. The Brightening Lives program also brings residents together, as they share a common bond — their love for animals.
The program promotes the value of animals in our community through bringing joy and happiness to individuals residing in hospitals, retirement residences, shelters and other long-term care facilities through volunteer and companion animal interactions.