In Session. With Dog.

Given my “situation” one of the requirements when picking out a pup was to try and get one of the mellower ones. This to me seems nearly redundant or perhaps a double dose of mellow since when these Greyhounds get to be adults they’re nearly comatose. Today, predictably, at a year old, Stella’s more like a sixty pound cat than a dog.

I figured though that if fate and Llewis were in cahoots to land a pup and a mellow one into my life, I’d do the Aikido thing and go with the flow. And what better way to leverage a super mellow, “don’t hate me because I’m beautiful” creature than to do a little therapy. A little pet therapy.

The plan is this: Stella’s gonna be the therapist. And I’m the person holding the leash and cashing the checks.

Unfortunately, however, it’s all volunteer so no $150 for 50 minutes. Damn!

Seriously, it’s about giving people who are very sick some good fur time. We’ll be working with patients in hospice settings as well as working in some more acute care areas within hospitals. Stella also does great with kids so maybe a children’s setting will be in her future too.

The hoops we’ve both jumped through so far, me and the hound, have been vigorous. But for good reason. You need reliably calm, well mannered dogs to do this work. We passed the Canine Good Citizen test . We did a two hour evaluation session with the leaders of the therapy group: they poked, prodded, clanked around and did nearly everything to rattle the prospective therapy dog (Stella was rattle free–thankfully.)

I’ve also had to observe someone doing pet therapy at a hospital. And next, I will be observed–twice. Rigorous stuff. Lots to jam into a life getting more jammed by the minute.

Anyhoo, soon pet therapy will begin. And as much as I’d love to post more, as much as I’d love to go on and one about pet therapy, as much as I’d love to post a picture since I’ve not done so in months…I’m afraid that our fifty minutes are up.


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