Sunnie — Therapy

Location: Salem, Oregon

This beautiful soul came to me via Craigslist, and has become a source of warm, furry empathy and calm for hundreds of patients and staff at local hospitals. To Sunnie, life is about being needed, and she knows when someone needs cheering, healing, or just compassionate company. Patients and exhausted medical staff take new energy from her smile and tail wag.

For those patients and staff needing a smile, she jumps into her goofy routines; dancing, spinning, sitting up, playing dead, speaking with “inside voice”, shake paws, high fives, standing on her head for a butt rub, and more. For those requiring a more laid back encounter, Sunnie will offer her head on the edge of a bed for a willing hand.

She is ready at a moment’s notice when someone needs her. I just drive the car, she does the rest. I knew when we met that she belonged to the world and it would be a crime not to share her gifts. We all know a dog with a job is a happy dog.

Someone called our pet therapy work a “wonderful ministry.” Maybe it is but we are only one such team of thousands and we could use thousands more. We feel that we are right up there with the search and rescue dogs. Not locating physical people but locating and mending the spiritual and emotional needs of people.

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