At Ease Facility Dog Team: Murphy and Kim.
There are many aspects to being a volunteer Service Dog Trainer. A rewarding but unnerving aspect about training a Service Dog is that you never know what role the dog will grow into and how they help others in the future. It is a story that can only be told as the experience unfolds. Even with this uncertainty, you move forward with your dog-in-training and know by their progress and eagerness to learn, that they have the potential to do great things. Being a volunteer Service Dog trainer also takes lots of dedication and effort. At times it is fun and rewarding; at other times it can be frustrating. It is all part of the journey of taking an adorable puppy and providing them with the training, consistency and love they need in order to become a Service or Facility Dog. TLCAD Service Dog trainers are essential in transforming the lives of the Wounded Warriors and individuals with autism our dogs serve. It is because of volunteer trainers like Linda and Bill Chandler, that Murphy, a newly certified Facility Dog, helps up to 20 Wounded Warriors a week, by supporting them in reaching their rehabilitation goals. As a Facility Dog assisting a physical therapist at the C5 Vestibular Care Physical Therapy at the Naval Hospital San Diego, Murphy helps patients with their anxiety during painful or stressful physical therapy. He opens doors, retrieves and delivers items and wears a special harness to help patients with their balance during therapy. His impact on the lives of our Wounded Warriors is powerful and could not have been made possible without the Chandler’s dedication, hard work and trust in his potential. Although it is difficult to measure all of the time the Chandler’s spent getting through those puppy whines and long nights, driving to training classes, clicking and treating, shaping and rewarding; the results of their effort is immeasurable and is demonstrated daily in the positive impact that Murphy has on the lives of Wounded Warriors in their rehabilitation journey.