The first creation of blogging with my furry friends. We want you to know how much GOD loves you and how very special you are to HIM! We look foward to many days of blogging with you.
Andrea and "The Perdue Zoo"

Now you can read my blog even if you don't speak Malamute

Friday, November 28, 2008

First Therapy Visit

Months and months of dragging my parents to visit "hurting people" and they realized my gift. Upon realizing GOD had a special plan for me they began formal training at Dog Lover's Obedience School, located in Richmond, Virginia. Despite my special gift I possessed excitement and exuberance levels not yet safe for Hospitals and Nursing Homes. Eager to work within my gift my parents were diligent to prepare me to safely greet patients.

The time came for my first visit and I was so excited my parents had to continuely remind me: "easy-gentle." I entered The Laurels at Willow Creek with my furry friends where we performed a dog show for the residents able to come to the selected meeting room.

I noticed one man at the back of the room and could hardly see him. I knew I must visit with him, despite my Mom's prompting to politely visit others first. After bumping and nudging she decided to follow my lead and we made our way to the gentleman.

My new friend could not sit alone in his wheelchair; he had seatbelts and many attachments to his slumped body. Just as I had a human attached to my leash, he had a human attached to his chair. I noticed his human never left him unattended.

Mom told me to "Go Visit," so I tried to put my head in his chair from the side, but I had to wait on his human to lift his frail arm and lay it on top of my neck and back. I began snuggling close to his tummy remembering to be gentle near his feeding tube and other attachments.

While I was busy sharing GODS love through my touch Mom began speaking to my new friend. I know she could not understand his mumbles, but she continued to lovingly share with him. Mom realized this visit was meant for my new friend, thus I stayed with him until the time came for us to leave.

Mom told my new friend that it was time for us to go, looked at me and said, "heel." As I heeled away from my frail friend he lifted both arms and reached for me shocking both my Mom and his human (Nurse). My new friend had suffered a stroke and been unable to use his arms up until that Thursday evening. The next month when I arrived to visit the patients I found my friend wheeling himself into our meeting room to see me.

Each visit is a path on an exciting journey with GOD. I hope you will continue to travel this journey with me in spirit through my Mom's blog.

Woofs and Wags,

Sitka

Thursday, November 27, 2008

"Thanksgiving Past"

Thanksgiving is normally a time when our home is filled with humans. Our family is always extended to include humans who may not be biologically related to our parents and sometimes our guests bring their furry kids, too. However, two years ago our parents found themselves with an empty nest. Our human siblings were all going to be traveling with other family and friends. Our parents prayed and decided to take us on a trip for the holidays.

Our parents love to travel with us (their furry kids). They also love quiet, tranquil places where they can remove themselves from the craziness of normal daily lives and reconnect with God and each other. After prayer, the decision was made to visit Fairy Stone State Park near Bassett, Virginia. Reservations were made and off we went.

Just as we parked our mini van in front of our cabin it became seriously ill! Our parents were so thankful GOD had allowed us to reach our destination. They unloaded, counted their blessings, and took us for our first walk in the park.

The next day our Dad walked to the park office, called the local Chrysler dealership, and soon our mini van left behind a tow truck taking our Dad along. Many hours later Dad returned in a rental vehicle with the news, parts needed to be ordered and would take a week to receive and install. Our parents realized God was allowing them the opportunity to have a much needed extended vacation with no TVs and phone's.

As the days past our parents quickly ran out of clean clothes. They decided to venture out in search of a laundry mat and soon found a suitable place to wash the residue from our resent hikes from their clothes. Dad helped Mom unload their clothes and then came back to the rental truck to rescue my brother, Trouble and I (Sitka) from the extra cab where we were waiting patiently.

As Dad walked us, I noticed a middle age couple outside the laundry mat. I nudged and pulled until Dad realized I was trying to take him somewhere. This couple seemed different; I had to get to them and Dad finally complied. We had quite a long visit as they were waiting for their clothes to finish, too. The lady cuddled with me, whispered her problems in my ears all while Dad assumed his position standing to the side with leash in hand.

After an hour of "dog therapy" the couple knew they must gather their things and step back into the world as they knew it. The ladies eyes filled with tears as she went inside to thank my Mom for sharing my brother and I with them. She told my Mom, "You will never know the difference your dogs made in my life today."

Sometimes GOD allows my parents to see why He takes them on an unplanned or extended journey. Each of my parents thanked GOD for our presence in a small town and for the sensitivity to follow HIS lead. GOD took us to a place where we otherwise would not have gone and further blessed our obedience.

Everyday is "Thanksgiving" in the heart of a therapy dog!

Woofs and Wags,
Sitka

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Therapy Dogs!

Hi, my name is Kubuna's Dry Run Sitka, but my friends call me Sitka. My nick name at home is "Fuzzy," but don't tell anyone. I am an Alaskan Malamute, weighing 125 pounds. I was born in Blacksburg, Virginia, at Dry Run Kennel. One afternoon a nice lady and gentleman from Richmond, Virginia, came to visit my kennel. I noticed the lady sat quietly down across the way. As my kennel door swung open and my future Dad reached for me, I darted out, passed him and ran as fast as I could and jumped into my new Mom's arms. I stole her heart from that very moment and I knew she was not leaving without me.

Once my parents came home with me the fun began. I was so cute and adorable they took me everywhere. It wasn't long until they realized I am very sensitive. I love all people, especially children, handicapped, and those who are hurting and need a hug. After realizing I had a special gift, my parents began obedience training with me (Dog Lovers Obedience School, Richmond, Virginia) and continue to reinforce and train me daily. I am now a registered therapy dog (TDA, CGC). I also tell my Mom before she has an asthma attack. Because I can sense the change and notify my Mom, she has not had an asthmatic episode in 2 years.

I love visiting hospitals, nursing homes, and wherever GOD leads and my parents (Doug and Andrea Perdue) take me. I have been as far north as Seaford, Delaware, where I attended a friend's mother's funeral and as far south as Pensacola and Destin, Florida where I visited in the Naval Air Museum, spent time on the beach with kids, and laid under my parents table in the Hard Rock Cafe.

In January 2008, my parents rescued a 85 pound Samoyed. My new brother's name is Nanuq. My parents and I chose this name because he looks like a polar bear. Nanuq began training after his health issues were treated and is now a therapy dog, also. We eagerly await all the back scratches, belly rubs, and great big hugs!

Woofs and Wags,

Sitka