Heritage News Covers Peaches’ Therapy Dog Work

Many thanks to Amy Bell of Heritage News for her thoughtful news article on Peaches’ therapy dog work in the Southeast Michigan community.

Peaches has spent quite a bit of time in the community volunteering once a week at the Ann Arbor Open School as part of the Reading Dogs program. She also spent the summer doing visits at the Humane Society of Huron Valley Camp Paws kids camp.

A few times a month, Douglas and Peaches visit the head pain and physical therapy units at the Chelsea Community Hospital and occasionally can be seen at the Chelsea District Library.  “She’s a very sweet dog,” said Jan Shamraj, recreational therapist at Chelsea Community Hospital. “She seeks out each patient in the room and wants to interact with everyone.”

About emily douglas

Emily Douglas authors The Unexamined Dog blog and writes regularly about "pit bull" advocacy, humane education and the parallels between the education field and the dog world. Emily and her dog, Peaches volunteer as a registered therapy dog team in the Southeast Michigan area, where their visits are affectionately known as Peach Therapy.
This entry was posted in Advocacy, Fun Stuff, Teaching and learning, Therapy Dogs or dogs in need of therapy and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Heritage News Covers Peaches’ Therapy Dog Work

  1. I so, so want a dog someday who would enjoy therapy work. I wanted to try it with Cerberus, but I feel he’s not very well suited to it. He really doesn’t *enjoy* being touched the way other dogs seem to – petting is something he tolerates for only brief periods of time before moving away. He enjoys being close to me and is almost always curled up at my feet or following me from room to room, but if I start petting him, he sighs and moves out of reach – what a jerk! 😛 My trainer once said that she thinks he would be a good dog for therapy work with people who have brain injuries because he would really enjoy interacting with them, at least a lot more than he would enjoy having to sit and be touched. I guess it is a goal that I’m putting on the back burner for a little while to give him time to mature and settle down a bit. Maybe it’s something we can pursue when he’s a little older and wiser.

    • I totally feel your pain. We have another dog, Buster who is absolutely perfect for therapy work in every way but one: He’s totally indifferent about strangers and doesn’t really enjoy holding still and letting them pet him. And if that’s a problem, then no amount of skill or training can make up for it. The reality is that you always have to accept and celebrate what each individual dog has going for them, and not try to make them fit into a particular box–which you obviously have already figured out! 😉 If you haven’t already, read my blog post from a while back titled, “Therapy Dogs: Not Born, Not Made, But Shaped.” My biggest worry these days is that therapy dog work is actually becoming too trendy and that people interested in getting involved in it aren’t stopping to ask themselves whether or not their dog would actually enjoy it and be a good fit for it like you have. Cerb sounds a lot like my Buster Brown. He loves training and playing and hanging out with me and he’s got his own special quirks, and I’ve realized that I enjoy all that alot more now that I’m not trying to make a therapy dog out of him.

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