“Hope Hounds” need your help to assist victims of human trafficking
Nestled in 32-acres in southern Louisiana, the Hope House of Louisiana is a secure place of refuge for victims of human trafficking; specifically, women who’ve been trapped in the sex industry. Hope House offers a transitional, short, or long-term program designed to meet the individual needs for the complete restoration of victims of sex trafficking. On its campus, every resident is provided medical services, emotional counseling, long-term social and vocational training, and an opportunity to receive unconditional love and undeniable therapy from Hope, Camo, Mason, and Chuck-Bob ; aka, “The Hope Hounds!”
The Hope Hounds wandered onto the Hope House Campus as an 8 week old lost litter of 4. Within hours of their arrival the resident’s of Hope House gave them names and took them under their care. By the end of the day the resident’s were full of smiles and laughter talking about how much they loved the dogs. It was evident that the pups were here for a purpose; to assist with the restoration and rehabilitation of these ladies lives.
I knew that we needed to start a therapy dog program. I’ve worked with dogs for over 10 years and retired from my own dog training business after my wife and I received a calling to enter this missionary field. Our business trained service dogs and therapy dogs for the military’s wounded warriors which allowed me to see the true therapy that dogs provide. Like our military therapy dog program, at Hope House we designed a course that includes the resident’s training, feeding, and grooming of the dogs. Furthermore the resident’s train the dogs in ways that will best assist them with their therapeutic needs.
The results of this program have been incredible! We have seen the resident’s learn responsibility and understand what love really is. Most importantly the dogs are truly helping the resident’s with their recovery. “Whenever I’m having a bad day I can go outside and hang out with the dogs… they make everything better,” confessed a resident. Another resident stated that, “I can see myself in Camo, he makes me realize things about myself that I’ve never been able to see.”
We now have a vision for the future for the Hope Hounds program at Hope House. The resident’s have expressed that they would like to compete with the dogs in obedience and agility as well as taking the dogs in public to assist with anxiety. This dog program has unbelievable potential, but without funding it will not exist. All of our staff and volunteers live off of missionary funds (generous blessings from people who donate money to assist the staff) or retirement. Trafficking Hope, our parent organization is a non-profit. All of the operational funds for Hope House and the Hope Hounds project are raised through private or corporate donations and grants. We need your help; the residents need your help.
So far we have been beyond blessed from numerous organizations that have been behind us 100%. America’s Dog Pitbull Rescue has provided us with dog food, Dr. Amy Sutherland of Animal Care Center and Waggin Wheels Mobile Vet in Hammond, La have been a HUGE blessing by allowing us to create a (unpaid) balance with discounted vet expenses, and Dr. Fairchild of Spay Spa in Port Allen, La has fixed our pups with an upaid balance as well. Noteworthy: Dr. Amy even came in on Easter Sunday for an emergency surgery when Camo cut his chest open with an impelled stick (It’s all fun and games until one of the puppies roll down a ravine and impels his chest with a stick).
After seeing the resident’s interact with the Hope Hounds, it is impossible not to notice the impact that these four-legged animals are making towards the progress of the residents at Hope House. Please view below to learn about human trafficking, meet the Hope Hounds, see how you can help fund this program, and view my qualifications as a dog trainer in reference to the program. Along with donations, we are looking for businesses and/or families who would like to sponsor a dog with a monthly donation which will supply its’ heartworm treatment, flea and tick treatment, and food.
For more information on Trafficking Hope and Hope House please visit www.traffickinghope.org and www.hopehousela.com
Human Trafficking Statistics
· 30% of homeless shelter youth and 70% of street youth are victims of commercial sexual exploitation
· It is estimated that there are between 100,000 and 300,000 child victims of human trafficking in the U.S. alone
· Within 48 hours of being on the street, 1 in 3 children are lured into commercial sexual exploitation
· 75% of minors engaged in prostitution have a pimp. By law, this makes them victims of human trafficking
· Pimps can earn up to $632,000 per year by selling 4 women or children
· Age of entry into human trafficking for girls and boys ranges from 11-14 years old
· Estimated that there are only 100 beds available in the U.S. for sex trafficking victims
The Hope Hounds!
Camo is our role model puppy. He enjoys lying around, being lazy, soliciting pets, learning obedience and playing with his sister Hope. Camo does have a bad habit of getting hurt. While playing with his litter he rolled down a ravine and had a stick impelled into his chest! Dr. Sutherland was able to patch him up to full recovery, but Camo found trouble again. He recently had a partial tear to his cruciate and has since fully recovered. Camo is our staff favorite and is looking for someone to step up to help pay for his upcoming surgery.
Lets be perfectly clear . . .Hope is our mischievious one! She enjoys loving more than any of the other dogs, but is always scheming to start a game of chase with her brothers. As the only girl, she has proven herself to be one tough cookie! She is known for stealth pounces on her brothers, rolling over for you when you get within 10’ of her, and hunting frogs.
Mason is the littlest of the boys, but suffers from small man syndrome. He likes to think he is the boss of the group even though he isn’t (Sorry Mason). This little man is a curious one and likes to check everything out. He is well known for his signature “Puppy face,” that makes everyone’s heart melt. Mason enjoys stealing toys from the other pups . . . only to have Chuck-Bob steal the toys from him.
Chuck-Bob! (Yes, he has 2 first names)
Chuck-Bob is our resident’s favorite, biggest pup, and leader of the pack. He is well known for sneaking away from the litter to spend personal one-on-one time with our residents. Chuck-Bob loves to play and believes that someone should always be petting him. This pup has taken on the role of “protector” and has been known to run off an armadillo or two or three in order to ensure the safety of Hope House.
How you can help fund this program
100% of the donations will go directly to the care of the dogs and the Hope Hounds Program. As of now Dr. Amy Sutherland of Animal Care Center and Waggin’ Wheels Mobile Vet allowed us to start an open account with an unpaid balance of approximately $800. This amount includes the 4 pups’ full vaccinations, heartworm treatment, flea and tick preventative, and Camo’s emergency vet visit and surgery on Easter Sunday!!!! This clinic vet has truly blessed us and will be the Hope Hounds attending vet. She has helped us tremendously and we would love to be able to pay her as soon as possible.
Spay Spa in Port Allen, La has stepped up and blessed us with the gift of spay and neuter! Thanks to Dr. Marianne Fairchild all of our pups are fixed and safe from multipying! Again, Spay Spa has stepped up and allowed us to get our pups fixed with an unpaid balance of approximately $500. She has helped us tremendously as well, and we would love to pay her back as well!
Please look below to see our needs and how you can help.
We welcome families and/or businesses to sponsor a pup by donating $75 a month for a year. These donations will cover heartworm preventative, flea and tick treatment, food (1, 35lb bag of dog food), and a savings fund to cover cost for the vet to come on site and examine dogs if needed. Here are the current Hounds available to be sponsored:
Camo: Sponsored by Dr. Amy Sutherland and the staff at Animal Care Center of Hammond, La and Waggin’ Wheels mobile vet.
Hope: Awaiting for a sponsor
Mason: Awaiting a sponsor
Chuck-Bob: Private sponsor
These are items that we need for the Hope Hounds to bring this program to its’ full potential:
· Full agility course
· 4- 5’x8’ dog runs to rest the dogs in during the night
· 4- lifted dog beds
· Furminator de-shedder
· 4- Large transportation kennels. We expect the dogs adult weights to be in between 60-80lbs
The remaining donations will go towards grooming products, toys, competition fees, competition traveling fees, training treats, miscellaneous dog products etc. Most importantly the remaining fees will go towards unexpected vet bills. We’ve had the pups for almost 3 months and in that time we have had 2 huge unexpected illnesses; Camo’s chest repair and cruciate tear. These puppies play and they play hard! They have a great time, but we do expect injuries and illnesses to arise. The facility is in a remote location where critters and parasites can interrupt our puppy’s lives.
We expect these dogs to be assisting the residents at Hope House for years to come. Every donation counts! This is a great way to contribute to the rehabilitation and new found life of victims of human trafficking.
Hope House of Louisiana Facility Director/ Supervisor of the Hope Hounds Program
Joseph Tullier is a native of Gonzales, Louisiana and has over 10 years of canine experience. He has worked and studied under some of the top canine trainers and animal behaviorist throughout the world. His philosophy on training dogs is based off of positive reinforcement, pack mentality, and dog psychology. He believes in order to train dogs you must truly understand how they think.
In 2003, Joseph enlisted in The United States Marine Corps where he was a Military Working Dog handler. He deployed to Iraq twice as a Working Dog Handler. In 2007 Joseph was selected to be a part of Dog Training School at Lackland Air Force base. There he spent 2 ½ years training dogs for the Military. Joseph received an honorable discharge and early retirement from The Marine Corps in 2009 due to a combat injury.
Following Joseph’s retirement he began working for Jasper Schoenmakers’, K10 Working Dogs, LLC. He held the positions of Head Liaison (between Holland and the U.S.) and Chief Trainer. There Joseph led training and maintained contracts with clients such as DoD and TSA.
In 2011 Joseph opened Acadiana Canine Training, LLC. As a true canine lover, Joseph decided to dedicate his time and training to families in the Baton Rouge, Denham Springs, Prairieville, and surrounding areas. In 2012 Acadiana Canine Training and the United States Army worked together to design a program that would provide service dogs for wounded soldiers and therapy dog for base hospitals.
After nearly 3 successful years, Joseph and his wife, Cami, decided to retire Acadiana Canine Training to enter the missionary field to help victims of human trafficking. In September of 2013 Joseph was appointed Facility Director of Hope House of Louisiana where he continues to serve and now looks forward to utilizing his knowledge of dogs in the Hope Hounds Program.
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