Watch out! We have a big, powerful blog post for you today. And someone is also a March birthday boy! I am so excited because we got to interview “the muscle” of the MASTDogs. He might be totally adorable and little, but he is the real brawn behind MAST, don’t let him fool you! He’s our March 2018 MASTDog of the month. Let’s get to know him!


What’s your name?
My name is Bubba Rovner!

What breed are you?
I am a Miniature Poodle.


What is your favorite spot to be pet?
The area behind my ears is my favorite place for someone to pet.


How old are you?
I will be 8 years old on March 4th!


How long have you been a therapy dog?
I passed my test and became a therapy dog 10 months ago.


What made you want to become a therapy dog?
My desire to make people happy motivated me to become a therapy dog.


How long did it take you to become certified?
After 6 weeks of obedience classes, I had one therapy dog class. The trainer, Mary Ann, let me test on the following Sunday. I guess I was just a NATURAL! (LOL!)


What is your favorite part about being a therapy dog?
Visiting the veterans and getting them to have an enjoyable part of their day.


What is the biggest surprise you’ve had while being a therapy dog?
The biggest surprise I have had is that I’ve been told 2 times that a patient wouldn’t talk to anyone. Both patients started talking after petting me!


What is your favorite toy?
My favorite “toy” is my 6-month old brother Harvey! (A standard poodle) We play constantly!


What is your favorite treat?
The sweet potato and barbecue chicken flavor dog biscuit is my best treat!


Do you have any favorite music?
Lately I’ve been enjoying songs by Five Finger Death Punch.


What does a therapy dog do, in your own words?
A therapy dog meets somebody who feels stressed or sad, and makes them feel relaxed and joyful!


What type of dog makes a good candidate for therapy dog work?
A dog who wants to please people and is both friendly and loyal makes a candidate for therapy dog work.


What kind of training should a therapy dog get?
The training program used by MAST dogs is the best. It’s six weeks of obedience and 4 weeks of therapy training.


How much time do you spend being a therapy dog each month?
We work at the James A. Lovell VA every Saturday for about 4 hours.


What is one suggestion you would make to someone considering becoming a therapy dog team?
If a dog and their human want to be a therapy dog team, it’s best to have a feeling of mission to bring joy to other people.


What can a therapy dog teach us about being good citizens?
We are caring and don’t pass judgement on people and that’s what makes us good citizens.


What do you do in your time off?
In my time off, I play with my brother and parents but always allow grooming time to maintain my signature MOHAWK haircut! My big human brother Ed is a Marine deployed in Iraq, and he also has a high and tight haircut!


Thanks Bubba, you big strong boy! Well, I made it through the interview with no fingers lost, so thanks for taking it so easy on me Bubba! (LOL)

And if you are interested in volunteering with MAST, please check out this page for more info!