Five Dogs Pass Therapy Dog Certification Test



Six dogs were tested last Saturday for Canine Good Citizen (CGC) certification and five of those underwent more rigorous testing to obtain the title of Therapy Dog International (TDI). All the dogs passed. I believe each one was a rescue dog.

These guys can do amazing things with a little love, attention and training. It is always wonderful to see the bond between dog and handler and see how these dogs want to please. Those that have a close relationship with a person, are treated as part of the family and share the home are friendly, well behaved and love people. This was certainly the case with this group.


Joanie King, right, is delighted to see Lucky exhibiting the perfect response for a therapy dog, putting his head in the lap of Sylvia Houbaugh, the wheelchair volunteer. TDI dogs must show no fear of loud noises, walkers or the flailing arms of impaired adults or children. Lucky is owned by Joyce Walker, second from left.

Now these dogs can bring pleasure to children and adults in hospitals and to residents of senior facilities. They can also offer programs for schools and libraries. Thanks to Joanie King for the TDI testing and Margie Mansell for the CGC testing.

My daughter was driving with her two children and the family dog from Seattle, Wash. to Strawberry. She called from her cell phone on Saturday afternoon. I could tell something was up. They were driving south from Moab, Utah toward Interstate 40 near Holbrook. Off to the side of the road, she saw movement. She drove on for a short distance, but then knew she had to go back. At first she could not find them. Then she saw two puppies. A third one was dead. They were in the middle of nowhere with no building or human in sight. Not even another car. She picked up the puppies and placed them on the laps of her 3- and 5-year-olds, who were amazed, amused and excited in their car seats in the back of the van.

The puppies were malnourished and dehydrated. They were delighted to be found.

They are now thriving on nutritious meals four times a day, all the water they can drink and lots of socialization. My two dogs are not thrilled, but they are working it out. After a visit to our friendly veterinarian, they have received shots and worming medicine and we were told they appear healthy.

How could anyone simply dump living creatures in the middle of nowhere with almost no chance of survival? These pups are examples of disposable dogs. They were bony, emaciated, like those photos you see on TV. Their hips and backbones protruded and you could count each rib. Their bellies were distended, their ears were full of ticks and they looked hopeless and helpless. After just a few days of food, water, attention and some vet care, they are thriving and begging for people to play with them. These two girls are looking for a good home with a fenced yard and people who will welcome them as part of the family. Call me at (928) 476-2239 to see these amazing, adorable survivors.

The Fourth of July festivities can be frightening for dogs. More dogs break out of their yards and get lost on this day than any other. And because they are scared, they keep running. Bring your dog inside during any fireworks.

Talk to him and let him know that he is safe.

Have a happy and safe Fourth of July holiday.

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