Service dogs take 'flight to nowhere' at MSP Airport

- Eight service dogs boarded a mock airplane at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport Saturday and took a fake flight to train them for situations they may encounter while traveling with their future partners.

The dogs are part of the nonprofit Can Do Canines, which trains dogs adopted from local animal shelters to assist people with disabilities. After they are trained, the dogs are paired with people who have mobility disorders, hearing loss, seizure disorders, diabetes or autism. 

At the airport, the dogs underwent everything from passing through Transportation Security Administration security checkpoints to boarding the mock airplane to getting ready for a nonexistent flight.

“It’s important as these dogs are being trained to expose them to as many possible scenarios as we can,” Nancy Weitgenant, Can Do Canines puppy program coordinator said in a statement. “Many of our clients travel with their assistance dogs, so being certain they can perform their often life-saving skills in a busy place like an airport is vital.”

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