About Faithful Paws

PURPOSE:  Founded in 1997 for the purpose of bringing unconditional love to adults and children in the greater Houston area.  Our American Kennel Club certified teams visit schools, libraries, hospitals, senior -tiered living communities, rehabilitation facilities, hospice centers, colleges, universities and other organizations that request our services.  Our required training program teaches pets and their handlers behaviors and skills needed for pet therapy visits.

BENEFITS OF PET THERAPY:  Ongoing scientific research suggests that pet therapy has significant benefits, including decreases stress, blood pressure, heart rate, pain, fatigue, anxiety, loneliness and depression, as well as increases in a positive outlook, energy level, self-esteem and satisfaction.

Faithful Paws Director, Connie Richards

Founder, Connie Richards served as Executive Director for the first 25 years and continues to serve as a visiting member.

‘I think everyone should have a motto for life. The words that I live by are: “To touch everyone that I meet in a positive way and to have them pay it forward.’



GOVERNANCE:  We are a 501(c)(3) approved non-profit organization.

OUR TEAMS:  Our teams are composed of a handler and pet. We are 100% volunteers. We give our time and the joy our pet brings to requesting facilities. All of our teams are tested and certified to be allowed to visit. All participating pets are our personal pets.  Each new team begins their membership with a probationary period of 6 months and must complete 10 successful visits.  Though most certified pets are dogs, we welcome cats and rabbits. Though we love reptiles and exotic animals, we are not able to welcome certify them to participate in our organization.

VISITS:  In a typical year over 10,000 visits are logged by Faithful Paws Teams.  Each approved facility has a team leader who coordinates all aspects of the visit. Requirements vary between facilities and may include TB tests, flu shots, and background checks, special attire, as well as additional training or further orientation.  All members are required to adhere to HIPAA confidentiality laws.  Ongoing visits are scheduled, usually weekly, bi-weekly or monthly.  One-time visits are scheduled as requested; many of these provide stress relief for students at exam time. Visits are typically composed of a minimum of 2 to 6 teams or more.

To learn more about becoming a member of Faithful Paws, click here!

Faithful Paws Pet Therapy

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Your contribution to Faithful Paws is greatly appreciated.
Thank you for supporting our important, life-enhancing mission.