In Praise of a Great Dog

My dog is a little sad this week.

Our youngest son Zach has started attending a new school, one which specializes in children with autism.  For the past 4 years, his service dog Gemini has accompanied him to school each day, because she helps him to transition from one part of the building to another (it’s one of the skills she was trained for), and because, when we first got her, Zach seemed to focus more when she was around (Now, she’s such an ingrained part of his life that I’m not sure that’s still true).

The new school doesn’t have anything against Gemini, but they want to see if the systems they have in place can provide what Zach needs without Gemini having to help him transition.  It makes sense.  But it means (if the change sticks) that Gemini will be giving up what had become the biggest part of her work.  There is still plenty for her to do, but the look on her face Monday when Josh got on his school bus, and the Zach got in the car to go to school – well, the look said “what about me?”  It really did.

So, I just want to say that we have a marvelous dog, who has made our sons’ lives so much better during these 4 years, and will continue to do so.  But, like so many people these days, she’s a little underemployed at the moment.

3 thoughts on “In Praise of a Great Dog”

  1. A great example of a 4 Paws Service Dog. It will be awesome if she did her job so well he has the confidence now to go on and transition without her. YEAH!

  2. This amazing story would make a good squib for the 4 Paws for Ability home page, with a link back to this site. How exciting to see how much the dog has helped stabilize Zach (and as you say, will continue to do so). Let me know.

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