Mandel Alum Jane Miller on Maximizing Her Impact on Lives with Ordinary Dogs Through Imagination and Passion


September 19, 2018 ~ We caught up with Jane Miller, a Mandel School alumnus who will be part of Alumni Authors Alley on October 12. Miller is a licensed independent social worker, psychiatric service dog trainer, certified dog behavior consultant, celebrated author, and founder of Healing Companions, Inc.  Healing Companions is a non-profit organization dedicated to assisting people with disabilities such as depression, post-traumatic stress, bipolar disorder, anxiety, panic attacks and more, by partnering them with Psychiatric Service Dogs In-training (PSDIT).

Her book, Healing Companions: Ordinary Dogs and Their Extraordinary Power to Transform Lives is a groundbreaking book that provides a window into the new world of Psychiatric Service Dogs (PSDs) and how they can offer some of society’s most vulnerable people a second chance at life. The book is a great read that offers hope and shares stories of how these dogs have changed and enhanced the lives of their human companions.

Jane Miller Mandel AlumnusIn Healing Companions, Jane Miller introduces these amazing dogs and explains how they have helped vulnerable people improve their lives in profound and unexpected ways. PSDs have allowed them to gain self-esteem, self-confidence, assertiveness, and so much more. These dogs provide emotional support, as all dogs do, but they are specifically trained to perform certain tasks unique to each individual’s needs.

Q: When did you discover the ability of dogs to perform the work of PSDs? As a child of divorced parents, I learned early on the comfort of our black lab, Tasha. She was my best friend and confidant, especially through the trials and tribulations of adolescence. But really, Umaya, one of my golden retrievers, set my life trajectory.  At age four, Umaya contracted cancer. I was working at a clinic and seeing clients all day.  Umaya’s oncologist suggested that Continue Reading →


Another Great Meet and Greet


Another successful meet, greet and adoption for Brody, a shelter dog that received his basic training from one of the inmates we trained.  This training takes place thanks to all of your generous support and donations. Meet Brody as he meets Tracy and her retired psychiatric service dog, Finola. Brody and Finola got along beautifully and had a wonderful play time together and Brody captured Tracy’s heart. I am thrilled to Continue Reading →


Successful Meet and Greet…

First, we would like to thank Gina Lallo, Founder of Forget Me Not Animal Rescue, for donating Colton to our program, Joette Mehalio, Foster mom and training home for Colton and Jennifer Mauger, CPDT-KSA, KPA-CPT, Owner/Trainer L’Chaim Canine, for helping train Joette to prepare Colton for Brian. We are deeply touched, grateful, and appreciative of everything they have done for Brian, Colton and Healing Companions, Inc. A truly magical gift that will change so many lives. Thanks so much for everything.

Colton and Brian’s meeting went really well and Colton has been placed with Brian.  Brian was so thrilled and Continue Reading →


Sign the Pledge! Eliminate Electric Shock

Join me in signing the pledge to eliminate electric shock in the training, care and management of pets.

The Shock Free Coalition believes that pets have an intrinsic right to be treated humanely, to have each of their individual needs met, and to live in a safe, enriched environment free from force, pain and fear.  Members of the Shock Free Coalition consider it to be their responsibility and utmost obligation to be vigilant, to educate, to remain engaged and work toward eliminating shock as a permissible tool so it is never considered a viable option in the training, management and care of pets.
Checkout the great roll out activities. Get involved today! Click here

PPG is gathering signatures with the help from social media pages like, to show corporations how the pet owning community and pet professionals feel about the sale and distribution of training aids that can physically and mentally damage our pets.

Even at the lowest setting, electrical stimulation devices present an unknown stimulus to pets which, when not paired with a positive stimulus, at best is neutral and at worst is frightening/painful to the animal. Pets learning to exhibit a behavior in order to escape or avoid fear or pain are, by definition, subjected to an aversive stimulus. Studies indicated that dogs trained with shock displayed stress signals as they approached the training area and frequently work slowly and deliberately. In many instances, electrical stimulation causes physiological pain and psychological stress to the animal, often exhibited by vocalization, urination, defecation, fleeing and complete shut-down. In extreme cases, electrical stimulation devices may burn animal tissue.

Page 1 of 4 1234