April 30, 2019 (Denver, NC) ─ He might slobber and shed a little, but Bogie is one of the most popular volunteers at Wexford House, a DePaul Senior Living Community in Denver. A golden doodle belonging to Sue Schoenecker, Bogie has been providing pet therapy at Wexford House for about four years now.
Bogie and his owner Sue are pictured here with residents Dot Weinel and Gloria Barber.
April 30 is National Pet Therapy Day, an opportunity to recognize therapy animals and their companions for providing comfort and healing to people of all ages and in all settings, from hospitals and assisted living facilities to schools and pediatric care units.
According to Therapy Dogs International, studies have shown a decrease in blood pressure and stress levels during pet therapy visits. For Sue and Bogie, it’s just a way to give back.
Bogie began training to be a therapy dog at five months old.
“Bogie is so laid back,” said Sue. “I tried to put him in agility classes. He likes love. Not going up and down on teeter totters. If people aren’t fussing over him, he gets bent out of shape.”
Certified with Therapy Dogs International, Bogie has worked in hospitals, libraries and hospice.
“You can tell when he goes into a room, he knows it’s work,” said Sue. “Once we get out of that car and into a facility, his personality changes.”
Activities Director Leslie Spinner said many people have had a dog sometime in their life. Seeing Bogie brings them back to a happy time in their life,
“Dogs give unconditional love,” said Leslie. “You can’t be in a bad mood for long when you are around a pet.”