Skip to main content

A Sweet Day with Therapy Dogs & Dandelions

Elizabeth Lynch
National Program Educator

Passing rain showers could not dampen the enthusiasm of the attendees at the Dandelion Festival held on April 9, 2022 at Muscoot Farm in Katonah, NY.

Pet Partners was on hand to greet all visitors at the Dandelion Festival, which celebrates the children of military families. The Dandelion Festival is a nationwide event, held during the month of April, and coordinated by Blue Star Families, an organization which provides support for families with a member serving in the U.S. military.

The crowds were delighted by the attending therapy animal teams: Remi (standard poodle) and handler Trish Leavitt; Tucker (golden retriever) and handler Chris Ponti; and Beau (Siberian husky) and handler Caroline Loevner. Carol Schwanhausser and her grandson JR volunteered to inform visitors about therapy animals; handed out treats, trading cards, and stickers to attendees; and assisted handlers with the crowd and safe visiting with the teams.

A therapy dog handler and therapy standard poodle pose in front of a table with a Pet Partners tablecloth and a variety of baked goods and literature.
Trish Leavitt and Remi



Three adults and a toddler interact with a golden retriever therapy dog while listening to the dog's handler.
Tucker and Chris Ponti visit with the Rendon family
Two children pet a Siberian husky therapy dog while the dog's handler guides their interactions.
Caroline Loevner and Beau with Jake Coakley and JR Schwanhausser

In addition to providing therapy animal teams for the event, Pet Partners provided all the treats for the festival. Elizabeth Lynch, National Program Educator, baked 100 cupcakes decorated with hand-piped dandelions, as well as 100 rabbit-shaped sugar cookies with a dandelion-decorated base. In exchange, Blue Star Families donated $300 to Pet Partners for Treats & Sweets Day.

A decorated rabbit-shaped sugar cookie is in a bag with a Pet Partners trading card.
Rabbit sugar cookie with a therapy animal trading card
A cupcake with green frosting and a yellow frosting dandelion decoration.
Dandelion cupcakes with hand-piped, frosted flower decorations

It was a wonderful day. We hope to be invited again next year!

Blue Star Families holds events across the U.S. If you are a Pet Partners volunteer interested in bringing therapy animals to an event in your area, visit their website.