Guess what! I graduated!
Hero Dogs held a graduation in April, and I graduated in the Therapy Dog program. I was very excited to be at graduation and sit on stage. I worked really hard to get here, going on over 50 therapy dog visits and helping out in lots of therapy sessions. I even had a graduation cap; I have to admit this was not my favorite part of graduation, but I did get some yummy snacks out of the deal.
Since graduation I have been continuing my therapy dog work. I am now an official member of the Red Cross pack. I really enjoy being part of the Red Cross team and am always exited to see my friends when I arrive. We walk around the hospital and everyone smiles when they see us. The nurses and doctors especially like when they see us coming. There is even this one lady who keeps snacks at her desk for us! She is one of my favorite people!
I am also still doing my animal-assisted therapy at both the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington and George Washington University Hospital. I am now a pro at playing tug of war with people. I have lots of fun playing this. Sometimes I am nice and let the person win – sometimes, NOT all the time. The person I am playing with is normally working on their grip, so I have to be careful to give steady pressure and not just yank as hard as I can or thrash my head around. I am pretty good at this because it’s the same concept as when I was learning to pull a wheelchair when I was training to be a service dog. At the Hebrew Home I like playing ball with a lady named Annie. She really likes playing with me because I am more focused and eager to play, unlike some of my golden retriever friends.
Other than my therapy work I have been hanging out with my kennel dog friends and making sure all these new kennel dogs are kept in line. I also went to Rolling Thunder, where I got petted by lots and lots of biker people. I also showed people some of the skills I learned while training to be a service dog, and I educated people about how (like me) not everyone is cut out for the service dog career but are more suited for jobs like being a facility dog or a therapy dog (like me).
Don’t worry – I have also been enjoying the nice weather by going on some hikes. I really like going hiking and exploring. While I do not like going in deep water where I have to swim, I love playing in streams and shallow water; even a puddle will do. I think soon Becca and I will also start going on kayaking adventures again. I am a very good boy in the kayak and I just lay down and enjoy the sights and smells, and of course a snack or two along the way.
Ok, well, it’s time to head out to do some therapy dog work. Catch you later!