Besides writing my other passion is dogs.  I have four, three active Papillons and one tiny Yorkie.  Rudy is my oldest and rowdiest of all my dogs.  He is always plotting something. His favorite thing to play ball.  He can catch it in mid-air, which amazes my son’s friends to no end.  Remy is a few days younger than Rudy.  He is my snuggled bear.  He loves to go to the nursing home and will lay with someone for as long as I let him.  Samantha is my only girl.  She is a dog my breeder rescued.  She has some issues that we are working through, but she has come a long way.  She no longer hides from my guys.  Riley is the baby at 4 months.  He’s my Yorkie and very happy–go-lucky.  I’m starting puppy class with him tonight.  I’ve been working on getting him out to meet people, because I know he’ll make a great therapy dog.  You can see all their pictures here

I got interested in therapy dogs after I had one visit me while I was recovering from complications after surgery.  On a day when I really needed something good to happen in walked this lady with a dog.  It was just what I needed to cheer me up. 


A few months after I got home, I lost my 17 year old Border Collie mix, Sigmund.  When I began to think to about getting another one, I thought about the therapy dog lady and began looking for a dog I thought could be a therapy dog.  I got a Papillon puppy, Rudy, who was VERY BUSY, so we got his brother, Remy, to keep him company.  (I have to warn you that Papillons are social dogs.  You rarely see an owner having just one.  Trust me.  We have three.) 


Anyway, to be a therapy dog all you need to be is social.  They have to like people and not be afraid to let strangers hold and pet them.  Also, they can’t be afraid of things like wheelchairs, carts, oxygen tanks or be easily spooked.  They can be big or small.  Their loving personality is the most important thing.  


We go to the nursing home, but I have friends that do hospice visits, and go to schools.  It all depends on what you feel comfortable with doing. 


There are several groups that you can work with.  We belong to Therapy Dog, Inc.  Their link is  You can read all about that they do.  Here is a link for Niki, who I got my papillons from  and Sheryl who I got Riley from  Check all the cute dogs. 


If you are interested in being a therapy dog handler check with your local kennel club.  They often have classes. 





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