Want to know more about behind the scenes of Wags for Wellness? Recently we partnered with Sarah DeMaranvile Photography for a mini promo shoot for the business. I thought it would be fun to use my own doggies to show just how much joy dogs can bring to our lives.
We currently have three dogs, a Chesapeake Bay Retriever named Guinness, and two Australian Cattle Dogs named Shandy and Hunter. Shandy is the red one, and Hunter is the blue one. All three have different personalities, and all three have different strengths and weaknesses.
Meet Guinness. He is a 10 year old Chesapeake Bay Retriever, and currently in the process of training to be a Certified therapy dog. Guinness loves everyone, and he loves his back scratches. Although he is a bit older, he is still full of energy, and loves going on walks and chasing things around the yard. He puts up with a lot when it comes to dealing with the two younger ones, and he has got to be the most patient dog in the world. He will always greet you with his tail wagging and ready for love!
This is Shandy. She is my 3 year old red heeler, and definitely takes the most energy out of me! I got her as an 8 week old puppy and trained her with the help of QCCAN. Although she is extremely obedient and listens very well, she does not have the temperament to be a therapy dog. Shandy likes to lick people to death and will sometimes get mouthy. She is definitely a headstrong and stubborn dog and will argue a point if she thinks she is right. Don't believe me? Ask to see a video of our arguments. It'll give you a good laugh. Shandy has done very well in agility, however, and will continue working on her skills with Scott County Kennel Club. Shandy also likes going on runs and chasing tennis balls.
And finally, this is Hunter. He is our 2 year old blue heeler which we adopted from a lady I had met during agility classes with Shandy. Hunter loves love. He is the biggest cuddler I have ever met. He likes jumping on you when you least expect it and gives you lots of cuddles and kisses. I thought that he would make the perfect therapy dog. Little did I know that Hunter only reserved his loves for people he knew, and not strangers. I took him for the first day of therapy dog training and he wanted nothing to do with other people. He stayed by my side the whole time. It is unfortunate, however he is definitely a lover and will at least give that love to us and our family and friends. Hunter loves going for walks and runs, and chasing his sister around the yard.
I'm so glad I get to introduce my dog family to you! I truly believe that these three improve my day on a daily basis, and coming home to them can cheer me up even on the toughest days. The reason I want so much to share the benefits of animal assisted therapy in my practice is because I belive in it so much and I know that it works!
Drop a comment below! Do you agree or have you found other ways to cope with mental illness? I'd love to hear others' perspectives. Or if you want, share your story and introduce your furry little ones. Dogs are not the only animals that can be therapeutic!