We train both veteran and dog as one unified team, creating a powerful bond based on trust and mutual service.

We train both veteran and dog as one unified team, creating a powerful bond based on trust and mutual service.

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The Wags Team

BARB ASHMEAD, BSc, MSC,
VICD DIRECTOR OF ADMINISTRATION – FUNDING & SPONSORSHIP

Since her youth, Barb has spent decades passionately involved with several animal charities. Most recently with the Canadian Animal Assistance Team (CAAT), she has served nationally and internationally to help spay, neuter and rescue both dogs and cats. Locally, she has co-chaired with her business partner the Qualicum Cat Rescue Society. Barb’s work with BC Guide Dogs, raising five puppies for service and autism support fostered her tremendous devotion for canine service. Collectively, these experiences empowered Barb to pilot the founding initiative of VICD upon the request from Comox Airforce Base seeking such a program in 2013. Both of Barb’s parent’s being WWII military veterans also stirred her unwavering vision for VICD’s purpose. Leaning on her research training and problem solving experience’s gained thought completing her Master’s Degree and acquired thought running a successful local business for more than 20 years have helped contribute to her tireless accomplishments.

MIKE ANNAN, CIPDT, ACE MI, ACE BC, SI SSDI
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

When Mike was growing up, he wanted to help every dog. This created a passion to work with dogs that needed help, and this became the foundation for his career. His goal is to help people and animals live in harmony. Mike is the co-founder, head obedience instructor, and behaviourist for the ACE Academy for Canine Educators. ACE is a canine education corporation for dog owners, trainers, and behaviourists who want to further educate themselves in their fields. Mike is the Owner and Head Trainer and Behaviourist of the Sal Pacific Canine Obedience and his goal is to have the most humane methods when working with dogs and strongly believes in using progressive calm energy, relaxation, redirection, and positive reinforcement when creating customized behaviour programs. Mike strives to educate himself by continuously researching and working daily in the dog training and behaviour field. He has taken and conducted seminars in early puppy training, canine aggression, anxiety disorders, and behaviour rehabilitation.  Mike is involved in many rescue organizations, including VICD.

JAN MCNEILL, MA, RCC, Registered Clinical Counsellor
DIRECTOR OF MENTAL HEALTH MENTAL HEALTH ADVISOR

Jan has been a practicing clinician for over 15 years specializing in trauma and addictions.  She has a background of working with high profile grief and loss clients along with those who suffer from chronic illness and pain. She believes in staying current in her field and pursues constant training in all areas. Jan volunteers with many non profit agencies and has a passion for helping people heal from life traumas and believes strongly in the power of animal therapy. Jan has a full time Private Practice and is an Adjunct Professor at the Adler University in Vancouver.  Jan has seen the impact of having a service dog and realizes that with all her training and experience, dogs have an intangible and unprecedented impact on helping people cope with mental health issues and worries she may be out of a job soon!

PATTI TURNER, A.P.C.I., SI SSDI
TRAINER AND FOSTER COORDINATOR

I grew up on Vancouver Island spending most of my time with my horses and dogs. From a very early age I knew that animals were going to be a large part of my life. As a child and a young adult amateur I competed in equestrian show jumping up to an International level and as a professional I have trained many show jumpers and people to compete from beginner to International levels. I have over 15 years experience managing my own training/ boarding and sales facility in the equine industry. So you might ask how I find myself training people and there dogs. In 2012 I adopted a 6 month old mix breed Pit bull / Catahoula Cross. After about six months I realized I needed help. This is what led me to begin my education and career in canine behaviour and obedience training. For the past 3 years I have dedicated my time mentoring with Mike Annan and working at Sal Pacific Canine Obedience. I have completed CD and CDX  Canadian Kennel club Competition standard Obedience and spent many hours working with Mike on behaviour modification programs for our clients. Combining the techniques and theories I have learned from Sal Pacific (Mike Annan) along with my years of training horses and working with people I have become an accredited professional Canine Instructor, and have come to find I have a great passion for working with dogs and their owners.

Training a team is provided free of charge to each recipient. It takes one year and between $25,000 and $30,000 for a team to complete the program. This includes dog food, veterinary treatments, obedience training, training equipment and gas cards to cover the travel cost to and from class. If you find value in what we do please consider donating. 

Our program is provided free of charge to each recipient. It takes one year and between $25,000 and $30,000 for a team to complete the program, This includes dog food, veterinary treatments, training, equipment and gas cards to cover travel to class.

If you find value in what we do please consider donating. Your donations help remind our veterans that their sacrifice is not forgotten.

Join us to help our neighbours, friends and family. Become a Volunteer.