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Therapy Dog Retires After 12 Years on the Job

Comfort Caring Canines (“CCC”)

For the past 12 years, Malibu has been faithfully visiting the residents of Dock Woods-Living Branches in Lansdale, PA.   Owners Nancy Guerrini and Mickie Kelly, have decided it is time for this girl to enjoy all that comes with retirement life.

From the first to the last visit, Malibu would proudly raise her head upon arrival at Dock Woods and immediately start the motor that would keep her tail wagging the entire time.  She would lead Nancy and Mickie with purpose and a brisk pace through the facility to her familiar stops.  At first, they, along with several other CCC dogs, stopped in the community area to visit with the residents who gathered for the visit.  Here there was plenty of space to accommodate the large group.  The residents loved it when Nancy and Malibu provided a demonstration of competition style obedience exercises and dazzled them with some clever dance moves.

Once our CCC dogs stepped in as the opening act for the Dock Woods Christmas concert.  Realizing the scheduled group was going to be arriving later than expected, they brought the dogs into the auditorium to walk around and visit with the crowd while someone led everyone in singing Christmas carols.  The dogs didn’t mind a bit and quickly became the entertainment.

Throughout the years, as other dogs retired and the residents were unable to make their way to the community room, Malibu continued her work, but started visiting the residents in their rooms.  There were a couple stops that she insisted they make by leading Nancy and Mickie to the rooms where she knew there were treats waiting for her.

Nancy reflects on her experience saying, “When you stop and think about it, it’s incredible how our dogs take us on these incredible journeys allowing us to meet so many different people and build new and lasting friendships.  Through CCC, we met many like-minded, terrific people whose desire is to share the love of their dogs to help others. We had the good fortune to visit senior citizens, children, college students, ALS patients/families, and many others.  These visits taught us compassion, understanding and was even a little therapy for us.”

Even though Malibu’s time as a therapy dog has ended, CCC is hoping for many more years with this duo.  Lucky for CCC, Nancy and Mickie would like to have their other lab, Stoli, certified.  Stoli is currently working toward titles in competition obedience, conformation, and field work. He is a well-rounded dog, and therapy work will very likely be a future endeavor.

CCC would like to thank Nancy and Mickie for their dedication to enriching the lives of so many during this journey with Malibu.  Each are wonderful ambassadors for CCC and for pet therapy programs in general.

To learn more about how to get your dog certified, please visit our website; http://comfortcaringcanines.org

Published October 2016