In 2017, we adopted Randy, our beautiful Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. He's given us countless hours of joy and came into our lives at a time when we, not coincidentally, were most in need of comfort and consolation. My mom (aka Grandma Jaye) was suffering from Alzheimer's disease and in the midst of a slow, sad decline. During that time, I started bringing Randy to visit my mom at her assisted living residence. She enjoyed his visits and loved holding and petting him, as did so many of the other residents. As I watched how Randy interacted with the residents and was calm in the midst of walkers, wheelchairs and the general commotion in that atmosphere, a seed was planted- Randy could be a great therapy dog! I also had the opportunity to see CCPT teams in action where my Mom lived and chatted with them about the organization and their experience. Eventually, I enrolled Randy in a basic obedience training class to prepare him for testing at CCPT. Randy was evaluated and passed the test in December 2019, shortly after my mom passed away. I think my mom had a role in helping Randy during the part of the evaluation that required him to pass by a plate of bacon and go up to greet people instead! A very tall order for a dog who LOVES food and was nicknamed "Bacon Boy" by our friends!
We began our therapy visits in 2020 but shortly thereafter had to stop due to the pandemic . I'm so glad to say we were able to resume our visits this spring and we're looking forward to many more in the future.