The Journey from Rescue Dog to Therapy Dog

Oh Gracie,

I am so proud of you. From death row in Springfield, Missouri to therapy dog in Holland, Michigan you have come quite far! Every day has been an amazing step on this our journey together and I appreciate each one.

Yes, we have been through months of training and you are now a therapy dog, which is wonderful, but that’s not why we love you so much. You have taught our whole family so many lessons and we are forever grateful.

You taught me the meaning of Cesar Millan’s quote, ‘You don’t get the dog you want, you get the dog you need.’ I needed you to teach me how to be a pack leader and how to live with the unknown. I wish I knew your history, but I never will. I won’t know if you ran away or were left somewhere. I just knew you needed a home.

You taught your 9 year old human sister what it is like to have a ‘real’ sister. You play with her and read with her and sit with her when she’s sad. Best of all you respect her favorite blanket and stuffed kitty, even though you’ve chewed through pretty much everything else!

You taught your canine brother Mojo that it’s ok to go outside and walk by big scary things (cars). You taught him that walks can actually be fun and the back yard is full of fun places to explore. Before you, he lived in fear. Now, he loves life. That is a gift for all of us.

You taught your dad that, even though you are incredibly sweet, you still chew things up when you’re bored (like my favorite high heels!). You’ve also taught him that it’s much better to go rollerblading with 2 dogs than by himself.

Your natural smile, cuddly nature and natural mischievousness have all been wonderful gifts you’ve given to us. I believe there was some force pulling us together, and I am so grateful for it. We can also tell that you recognize the love for you in our home, since your attempts at running now end about 10 feet from the fence. We’re glad you feel it too.


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