National Service Dogs

1286 Cedar Creek Road
Cambridge, ON N1R 5S5
Executive Director: Danielle Forbes
Board President: Breanna Roycroft

Charitable Reg. #:89802 9228 RR0001


Ci's Star Rating is calculated based on the following independent metrics:

[Charity Rating: 2/5]



Audited financial statements for current and previous years available on the charity’s website.



Grade based on the charity's public reporting of the work it does and the results it achieves.



The demonstrated impact per dollar Ci calculates from available program information.


Charity's cash and investments (funding reserves) relative to how much it spends on programs in most recent year.



For a dollar donated, after overhead costs of fundraising and admin/management (excluding surplus) 76 cents are available for programs.

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About National Service Dogs:

Founded in 1998, National Service Dogs (NSD) provides fully-trained service and companion dogs primarily to individuals with disabilities. NSD works out of Cambridge, Ontario towards its mission of empowering people to achieve their full potential through the support of service dogs. The charity trains and pairs dogs with people in need through four programs: Certified Service Dogs For Autism, Certified Service Dogs For PTSD, Canine Assisted Intervention, and Companion Dogs. All dogs are provided to eligible clients at no cost.

In F2020, NSD served 204 people, and vetted/trained 73 dogs. The charity also had 31 new puppies enter its training program. No breakdown of spending by program was provided by the charity.

Certified Service Dogs For Autism are typically Labradors and Golden Retrievers trained specifically for children living with Autism. NSD notes that these dogs work to improve the quality of life for autistic children and their caretakers by increasing their safety and helping these children suppress their behavioural outbursts.

Certified Service Dogs For PTSD are provided to Canadian veterans and first responders living with long-term Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in Ontario, British Columbia, and Alberta. NSD reports that these service dogs aid individuals with PTSD by providing reality affirmation and by indirectly encouraging their caretakers to create positive daily routines.

Canine Assisted Intervention dogs work as partners to professional therapy teams working to address health and wellness in areas such as trauma, or addiction.

Companion Dogs are for children who are under the age of 18 and living with various disabilities. Companion dogs are not certified for public access, and receive no special training other than in basic obedience. They contribute to increased wellbeing for their owners by providing companionship, decreasing stress, and encouraging their owner to exercise.

NSD reports that it places over 83% of its dogs with clients, while the dogs determined to be unfit for its programs are transitioned into pets available for purchase by the general public under its Very Important Pet service.

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Results and Impact

In F2020, National Service Dogs paired 15 dogs with clients. Of these paired dogs, six were Certified Service Dogs, six were Companion Dogs, and three were Canine Assisted Intervention Dogs. The total cost per pairing in F2020, using the 15 pairings, is $59,314 ($32k per pairing in F2019).

NSD notes that its Certified Service Dogs and Canine Assisted Intervention Dogs are valued at $40k over their eight to ten year working life, while its Companionship Dogs are valued at $5k.

Charity Intelligence highlights these key results. They may not be a complete representation of National Service Dogs' results.

Charity Intelligence has rated National Service Dogs as Low impact based on demonstrated social impact per dollar spent.

Impact Rating: Low

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National Service Dogs received donations and special events revenues of $842k in F2020. The charity received $93k in donated goods in kind and $16k in fees from clients. It also received $98k in covid-19 wage subsidy relief from the government. Administrative costs are 13% of total revenues and fundraising costs are 12% of donations. Per dollar donated to the charity, 76 cents go towards its programs. This is within Ci’s reasonable range for overhead spending.

National Service Dog’s funding reserves of $302k can cover just under 6 months of annual program costs.

National Service Dogs uses external fundraisers as part of its fundraising activities. In F2020, NSD reported paying $25k to external fundraisers that raised $204k. For every dollar raised from external fundraisers, it paid $0.12 to the third party.

This charity report is an update that has been sent to National Service Dogs for review. Changes and edits may be forthcoming.

Updated on July 21, 2021 by Rachel Leteta.

Financial Review

Financial Ratios

Fiscal year ending December
Administrative costs as % of revenues 12.6%20.1%21.9%
Fundraising costs as % of donations 11.7%13.3%11.0%
Total overhead spending 24.4%33.4%33.0%
Program cost coverage (%) 47.3%27.9%33.4%

Summary Financial Statements

All figures in $s
Donations 810,768654,439684,491
Goods in kind 92,99835,334127,889
Government funding 98,37700
Fees for service 15,52314,86314,934
Special events 31,305110,117133,544
Total revenues 1,048,971814,753960,858
Program costs 639,024589,259652,431
Administrative costs 132,568163,329210,815
Fundraising costs 98,759101,96490,180
Other costs 4,3134,7495,173
Total spending 874,664859,301958,599
Cash flow from operations 174,307(44,548)2,259
Capital spending 31,7301,5940
Funding reserves 301,958164,438217,951

Note: Ci reports on a cash basis and thus adjusted for deferred donations, affecting total revenues by $103k in F2020, ($82k) in F2019 and ($6k) in F2018. Ci used the charity's T3010 filing with the CRA for its administrative and fundraising cost breakdown. 

Salary Information

Full-time staff: 6

Avg. compensation: $-17,951

Top 10 staff salary range:

$350k +
$300k - $350k
$250k - $300k
$200k - $250k
$160k - $200k
$120k - $160k
$80k - $120k
$40k - $80k
< $40k

Information from most recent CRA Charities Directorate filings for F2020

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Comments & Contact

Comments added by the Charity:

No comments have been added by the charity.

Charity Contact

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Tel: 519-623-4188


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Charitable Registration Number: 80340 7956 RR0001