August 1996-July 2007
Buddy, a Shih Tzu, was born in August 1996. In the spring of 2002 I was looking for a small dog to be a therapy dog with my golden retriever, Joy and I. While doing therapy dog work with Joy, I realized that many people we visited would benefit from a little dog they could hold and I began searching for such a dog. In June 2002, a friend told me of a Shih Tzu that a family was wanting to place in a good home. I went to visit, interview Buddy and we met like old friends. I took him on a trial visit to a nursing home that weekend and it was like he had done it all of his life. So I called his owners and said I wanted to keep him; by July 2002 he had been tested and become registered with Therapy Dogs Inc. as a therapy dog.
He was always so happy when I put his little vest on him and we headed to town. And he could hardly wait to get into someone's lap. One little lady in particular loved his visits and would often ask other therapy dog teams Is that little black dog here today? At times, while sitting on a lap, he would raise his little face up and do a soft howl, like a wolf, that was a sound of pure pleasure.
In June 2007 his heart disease, which had started to progress in the fall of 2006, took a grip on him. And though he resisted at first, he finally decided it was time to go on 8 July 2007.
Buddy touched the hearts of many people during his five years as a registered therapy dog and brought countless hours of love to us. To come home and be greeted by him standing on his hind legs looking up at us was irresistible. To say he will be missed is an understatement.