This month’s special puppy is very scholarly, in fact, she works at Governors State University! Her IQ has to be sky high. She’s the official Library Therapy dog for students at the GSU Library! She has weekly hours every Tuesday until December 4th, at least. So from 2-6 pm, you can go by and say “Hi!” She also attends class from 7:30 pm to 10:20 pm! What a smartypants!

She was a PAWs Chicago rescue, and was certified by MAST as a therapy dog. She loves to chase balls, go on long walks, be pet, sleep and chew on a good bone. Like we all do! Let’s get to know her!

What is your name? Sandy

What breed are you? Not sure, my human won’t pay for the DNA test.

Were you a rescue? Yes, I rescued my human

How old are you? 5 human years old

How long have you been a therapy dog? Just over a year

What made you want to become a therapy dog? I needed to get my human out to meet more people, it’s amazing how many more he meets with me, but unfortunately, they only remember my name.

How long did it take you to become certified? I passed my certification after 10 weeks of training, it was hard to get my human to do it right, but he finally learned.

What is your favorite part about being a therapy dog? All the people I get to meet, I have started to have a few favorites I see every week.

What is the biggest surprise you’ve had while being a therapy dog? That all the petting can really wear you out.

What is your favorite toy? I have 7 orange and blue Chuck-it balls, I can’t seem to chew them up no matter how much I try. They are numbered because I like each one at a different time.

What is your favorite treat? I really like pigs’ ears, of course the rest of the pig like bacon isn’t bad either.

What is your favorite spot to be pet? I like having my tummy rubbed but its hard for some to get down and do that, so I’ll let them scratch my ears.

Do you have any favorite music? I like rock but haven’t learned to turn the car radio to another station, it’s always on country music, so I just nap when in the car.

What does a therapy dog do, in your own words? I make people calm and let them talk to me and I don’t judge. If more people learned to listen I could retire and play with my toys.

What type of dog makes a good candidate for therapy dog work? I’ve met so many dogs in MAST that all make great therapy dogs, I think all dogs can be therapy dogs.

What kind of training should a therapy dog get? I liked my training, but it was me and my human handler that need to be trained together, so we can help each other.

How much time do you spend being a therapy dog each month? Every week. I spend an entire day being a therapy dog, I get to go to Governors State University and spend the day in the library helping students that miss their dogs or need help after exams, then I go to class and listen to my human talk. I’m hoping to get to some hospital trips soon.

What is one suggestion you would make to someone considering becoming a therapy dog team? Do it, it’s the best thing I’ve done in a long time.

What can a therapy dog teach us about being good citizens? To get along, when the dogs get together to visit the hospitals we all get along and squeeze into the elevators and enjoy spending time with each other, more humans should just get along.

What do you do in your time off? I play fetch in the park across from my house and take care of my humans’ mom. She broke a few bones and has needed my help making sure she is Ok each day and I help her keep moving.

Do you have any quirks? Just that I like humans so much.

Any last comments? On my first hospital trip a met a young lady in a waiting room, I saw she was sad to I went up to say hello. I was surprised when she got down on the floor and hugged me and pulled me on to her lap. She then buried her head into my fur and started crying. I didn’t move for several minutes. She stopped crying and let go. She thanked my handler and wiped her eyes and came to meet the other dogs. Not sure why she was so sad, I was just happy I was there for her.

 

Thank you for what you do sweet girl, we hope to see you out on rounds soon.

If you are interested in volunteering with MAST, please check out this page for more info.