The meet and greet with Wounded Warrior, James, and Sadie, the fully-trained Service Dog generously donated by her former owner, Kendra, in New Jersey, couldn’t have gone any better! There was an absolutely instant bond between James and Sadie. James was at home with his wife, Gina, and their son. They were so impressed with Sadie’s beauty, and I showed them a bunch of commands that Sadie knew, then had James repeat them. Sadie was perfect! She even loved playing with their puppy, “Colby”, and Sadie wasn’t fazed by their three cats. James was SO happy! Much thanks to Jill, who fostered and worked with Sadie to get over her separation anxiety from Kendra, and took Sadie all over – even to the rodeo – where Sadie just sat there cool as can be! The whole family was overcome with joy at this gift for James, who is just now seeking treatment for his TBI resulting from 25 years in the military (he is still active duty) and his over a dozen major concussions. We wrote down all commands so that he always has something to refer to, went over feeding and potty schedules, brought some extra bags of Sadie’s hypoallergenic food, toys, bed, etc. We took a walk outside with Sadie, and she heeled wonderfully with James. He couldn’t be happier! I think his favorite (well, certainly my favorite) command is “Sadie – LOVE” – where Sadie would go up to James and put her paws on him, wrap her arms around his neck, and slather his face with kisses!
James has already taken Sadie to work at San Antonio Military Medical Center, where everyone has fallen in love with her. He said his anxiety levels are already so decreased with Sadie by his side! And, since he works on one of the floors as a case manager, he will be able to share that love with all his patients!
Kendra, Sadie’s former owner, and her mother, Lori, who flew Sadie in from New Jersey, are so happy that we found just the perfect person for Sadie. I have no doubt Sadie will continue to have the very best life possible – a huge backyard to run and play in, and a loving, supportive family that will do anything for her. Since Kendra had a TBI and anxiety, Sadie’s knowledge of when symptoms start to come on will easily transfer over.
James and I will continue training together out in public until they are comfortable – but it won’t take long! The first night, when it was time for bed, Sadie was already cuddled up in James’ sleeping spot! That’s something his wonderful wife, Gina, will have to adapt to!! I have no doubt that Sadie will alert to James’ almost nightly night terrors, and will take wonderful care of him – she was already doing covers from the front and back by the time we left about 3 hours later.
THANK YOU DEAR KENDRA FOR THIS LIFE-ALTERING GIFT YOU HAVE GIVEN ANOTHER AS YOU CONTINUE TO HEAL, KNOWING THAT SADIE’S LOVE OF WORK IS MORE THAN YOU NEED NOW THAT YOU ARE GETTING BETTER!!!
SO HAPPY FOR YOU JAMES AND SADIE