In Celebration of Courage

Courage and Deborah
therapy dog Courage

A Counselors Best Friend

It was a sad day earlier this week when our beloved therapy dog “Courage” passed away. Courage was close to 15 years old (which is old for a dog) but far too early for us. He was a fixture at the Center until he retired about 4 years ago. He could bring a smile to just about anyone with his antics. I remember seeing him in the lobby with children getting Courage to jump through a hoop (he would do just about anything for a treat). He especially though had trouble with one trick, when you asked him if he were sad, he would lie down, put his head on the floor and look so sad with his big brown eyes.  The only trouble was his tail would be wagging back and forth all the time. I guess he really did not know what sad really meant. Courage had the ability to just know when you needed that “extra touch”, he would come over and just be present with you. On second thought I guess he did really know what sad was.

At home he was just a big kid.  One of his favorite things to do was retrieve a tennis ball out of the pool, he could do this until he tired your arm out. I guess the one thing I miss the most about him is just his presence, he loved to just be with you.  If we were sitting in the family room watching TV he would get up, come over and lay by the TV; if you went into the living room to read, up he would get and come lay by the chair (in summer he would go to the tile floor instead, smart dog).  When you would get ready for bed, there he would be lying in the hall so you would have to step over him as you went back and forth getting ready.

I thought I would close with 2 of my favorite quotes about dogs:

  • "My dog does this amazing thing where he just exists and makes my whole life better because of it."
  • “Dogs are how people would be if the important stuff is all that mattered to us.”

As I finish writing this through my tears, I can not help but be joyful too for all the love he brought our way.  I miss you Courage.

If you would like to read more about the Centers animal assisted therapy please click on the link.

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