Perfect Partners is committed to promoting the use of Disability Assist Dogs to health care professionals, disability-related organisations and community groups.
As part of the process to support the promotion of Disability Assist Dogs, Perfect Partners has started a lending library of resources in a variety of formats.
To request a copy, please contact us.
Topics currently covered by the Perfect Partners library include:
- Autism Spectrum Disorder
- Assistance Dog training
- Dog training and behaviour
- Research about Assistance Dogs
Please note, due to the large number of people that have borrowed from this library and have not returned items, items now will only be released from PPADT with a fully refundable bond. Items are loaned for a maximum period of 2 weeks.
PPADT also welcomes donations to this library.
- PPADT on facebook
- NZ Charities Commission
- NZ Animal Companion Council
- Australia and New Zealand Assistance Dogs (ANZAD)
- Animal Assisted Interventions International (AAII)
- International Association of Assistance Dog Partners (IAADP)
- Hearing Dogs for Deaf People New Zealand
- Mobility Assistance Dogs Trust
- Assistance Dogs New Zealand Trust
- New Zealand Epilepsy Assist Dogs Trust
- Royal New Zealand Foundation of the Blind
- Animal Welfare (Dogs) Code of Welfare 2010
- Assistance Dogs International Inc. (ADI)
- PET First Aid & Training (NZ)
The Perfect Partners team are highly recommended by our family if you are looking for a companion dog for an autistic child. The team is very professional; at all times considerate of us as a family and our son’s special needs. I was also very impressed with their competence and knowledge about dogs.
Perfect Partners assisted us in first choosing the right breed for our needs, and then helped us to source the perfect Golden retriever from Arangold Kennels.
The Perfect Partners training programme delivered to us, at a young age of 7 months, a puppy who obeyed about 20 standard commands, was toilet trained and completely suitable for our autistic son. During the training period regular visits, and lessons for the family in being a good dog owner, ensured a seamless transition when Toby came to live with us.
Toby, our dog, is a calm and well behaved dog who is adored by the family.
Having Toby in our son’s life has meant improved language, a mate to play with and a constant source of fun and games.
Since permanent placement, we can rely on Perfect Partners for support and advice. Regular monthly visits mean that ongoing training is achieved.
I would be happy to discuss any aspect of the programme and our experiences with Perfect Partners.
Sheryl, NZ and USA
Thank you Perfect Partners Assistance Dogs Trust (PPADT) and Belinda. Through their intervention and assistance I am now able to bring my Assistance Dog (Payton) into New Zealand. Payton does ten (10) days home quarantine (if cleared by MPI on arrival), and then is able to aid me out in public in her role as my assistance dog for the months we are in New Zealand. I am widowed and have health problems that have led to a medically diagnosed disability. I split my time between New Zealand, where I was born and raised, and overseas where my children and grandchildren live.
In 2013 it was time for Payton to travel with me to New Zealand. She had been trained by a formal Assistance Dog program overseas, had met all the requirements of Assistance Dogs International (ADI) including the required hours of public access training, and had passed her Public Access Test. I had three (3) different medical professionals saying that I needed Payton to be with me at all times because of the nature of my disability and the tasks Payton has been trained to do to help me.
Travelling to NZ with my assistance dog was a daunting task and I wasn’t sure where to begin. About six (6) months before I was to leave for NZ I hired a Dog Export/Import professional to handle the paperwork for me. Her job was to help me get the Permit to Import and keep me on track with all the required blood tests and vaccinations etc. It was approximately one month prior to my travel that the dog/exporter/importer told me that there was “no way” that the airlines would let my assistance dog travel with me. I was also told that she had been in contact with MPI and there was “no way” Payton would ever be certified as an assistance dog in NZ.
I was shocked and heartbroken thinking that my trip (and therefore the NZ part of my life) would have to be cancelled. I didn’t know where to turn or what to do. It is literally a matter of life and death that Payton be with me. I could not have managed without medical intervention if my dog had been put into quarantine and was not able to complete her quarantine period at home with me. I must have cried a bucket of tears as one day everything seemed to be set and then the next day we would get a different person on the phone and they would say no. It was very confusing. Unbeknown to me the pet importer/exporter I had hired had reported to MPI and the airlines that in her opinion I was not eligible for an assistance dog and Payton was not trained. I need to reiterate that this was her opinion – and she has no qualifications to make such a call – yet this had been accepted as fact and MPI and the airlines would not listen to me no matter how much documentation I provided as proof to the contrary. That was when Belinda from PPADT came into my life.
Belinda listened to my story and actually heard me. She asked me to send her copies of all my paperwork, dog training records, medical records and information about my trainer. Belinda called my trainer overseas and talked to her (no-one else had done that). I was very pleased Belinda was being so thorough because I understood that the requirements in NZ were different to overseas and I was happy to provide whatever PPADT may need. After checking everything, Belinda and PPADT decided to support my application to bring Payton into NZ. Belinda called MPI and the airlines on my behalf as it was difficult for me, being on the other side of the world, to make these calls in the necessary time zone. I am extremely grateful to Belinda for doing this for me. Belinda also helped me with all the MPI paperwork and kept me on track with the necessary requirements to import my dog.
Belinda was fighting for me in a way no one had ever fought for me before. Belinda pulled me up when I was down. She lifted my spirits and gave me hope. She was knowledgeable and confident in the information she provided – she gave me copies of the NZ legislation and other relevant documentation. She worked tirelessly. Her optimism kept me going. Finally, thanks to Belinda, twenty-two (22) hours before my departure time, I received word that the airlines would accept Payton as an assistance dog and that she would be able to travel in the cabin with me. I also received the Permit to Import from MPI and, if Payton passed the biosecurity inspection on arrival, permission for her to do home quarantine. My relief /joy cannot be expressed.
PPADT met me at the airport and completed their own public access test in a relaxed yet professional way. They were fully cognisant of the big trip Payton and I had just made and helped us to catch our connecting flight (after finding grass for Payton). They tested all the same things I had been tested on in my previous public access test. All this was done in a way that made me feel at ease as we had coffee and transferred between the international and domestic terminals. I have to admit that initially I was very nervous about doing a public access test again in New Zealand, but that all changed as soon as I met them.
PPADT granted certification for Payton as a disability assist dog in New Zealand under PPADT. I keep in regular contact with PPADT. They check that Payton is maintaining all her training and working at the required standards. I am now in New Zealand for my second visit with Payton and thanks to Belinda paving the way for me the first time, this trip was not nearly as stressful.
One of the best things to happen to me during all the ups and downs was to finally meet Belinda who was at the airport to greet us on that November morning in 2013. It may sound a little over the top but I really do believe I met my personal Guardian Angel that day. It is only because of her that I am able to live the life I am living. Thank you to PPADT and to Belinda. PPADT is a valued and needed organization to the NZ community.
As a postscript I need to thank MPI for reviewing my case and having the courage to reverse their initial decision. They were put in a difficult position from the information they had received from the Importer/Exporter I had hired. Once they had received all the information they required, thanks again to Belinda and PPADT, they reversed their initial decision. MPI’s job is to protect NZ and I am sure it is a difficult and stressful job. I applaud the MPI staff for the wonderful and difficult tasks they face every day.
Sheryl Leiser and Payton
Applying for a PPADT Dog
So you are thinking of applying for a Disability Assist Dog? Before applying to PPADT, we insist you take the time to consider the following five questions, as they contains topics essential for your application:
- 5 Questions to ask before partnering with a Disability Assist Dog (you may require Adobe Reader for this)