Our therapy animal teams serve nationwide and around the world. Over a lifetime, they devote many hours, sharing their empathetic spirits and friendly hearts with people in need. Whether visiting children in a classroom or spending time with seniors in a residential care facility, their impact makes all the difference in a client’s life. This page honors their many contributions to communities where they visit.
Our deepest gratitude to those animals who retired from Pet Partners therapy animal visits between July and September of 2019. Read the names of our most recent alumni.
Our heartfelt condolences go out to the handlers, families, and communities that lost a valued therapy animal and whose loss we learned of between July and September of 2019. The impact of their work will be felt for years to come. Read the names of therapy animals who have most recently crossed the rainbow bridge.
To our therapy animals who retired from their volunteer work in 2018: Pet Partners is proud and grateful for your hard work, and the work of your handlers. Read the names of our 2018 alumni.
To our therapy animals whose passing we learned of in 2018: We can’t thank you enough, nor express enough gratitude to the handlers who shared you with so many people and benefited from your service. Read the names of all the therapy animals whose passing we learned of in 2018.
We’re pleased to share the following tributes, courtesy of their handlers, to some of the amazing therapy animals who have served with Pet Partners.
Has your animal retired or passed? If you would like to share their story here, please contact us.
Alan Koch & Maggie worked together for a decade, with a focus on acute-care HIV patients at Our House of Portland, as well as in stress relief and post-crisis support. Alan shares the story of how Maggie became a therapy dog and what she meant to their clients as well as to him.Read More
Hirschey was just eight weeks old when he entered Alex’s life. He was small in size, but he had an enormous impact on Alex and everyone they visited.Read More
Ariel was a therapy dog for more than 13 years; she made over 15,000 contacts in that time. Her handler Jan reflects on Ariel’s amazing life and how Ariel made a difference in the lives of humans and animals in need.Read More
Snow was a rescued Great Pyrenees with a pure heart and gentle soul. She will be greatly missed by everyone lucky enough to have known her.Read More
Sherman the potbellied pig was a therapy animal and advocate for therapy pigs for 15 years. His handler Priscilla remembers the powerful impact Sherman had on people.Read More
Paddy was adopted on July 27, 2010. Besides being our super sweet and silky-soft daughter, she was a Delta Therapy Dog and a member of Power Paws where she spent her free Saturdays at libraries reading with children. She was a special fur baby and amazingly sweet, especially considering the abuse she suffered early in her life.Read More
Duke was loved by many; it was unfortunate he experienced so many health issues so quickly. He was a ‘student’ at the high school where I teach health and physical education. I integrated him into my classes, and he even had his picture taken each year in the yearbook!Read More
In November, we had to say goodbye to our sweet Indie after a painful battle with intestinal cancer. He was truly the light of my life and immediately loved by all he met. I had never met such a gentle, calm soul in either human or animal before.
Aragon the cat, actor, comedian and social activist was 14 years old and a longtime resident of Laguna Beach, Calif. He passed away peacefully on December 12th at 1:15 p.m.Read More
I am writing about Fiona, my Goldendoodle, who died September 24, 2018. She was a therapy dog for 6 years and had an instinct for knowing who needed her and how to behave around them. My proudest moment as her handler came in July 2016.Read More
Mabel became a therapy dog in order to share her gift of love with others and to help people in need. She eased the pain of the sick, comforted caregivers, supported hospital staff, snuggled with kids, encouraged young readers and always brought a smile to every face she encountered. The name Mabel means “lovable” and she shared her love every day with everyone around her.Read More
Gryphon excelled as a therapy dog, as an ambassador for his breed, and as a Read With Me dog in educational settings. Gryphon and his handler, Cathy Varidel, were a registered Pet Partners therapy animal team working with local group Compassionate Paws, Inc. in Rome, GA for seven years.Read More
During Sadie’s 10 years of therapy work, she helped young students working on improving their reading skills, made hospice visits and frequently participated in stress relief for college students during finals week. She loved this work and never hesitated when it was time for a visit.Read More
I don’t think Lego ever willfully did anything wrong. She was my constant companion and so sweet and loving. She had the most glorious soft coat and the most beautiful blue eyes. I think she knew she was my perfect little fur person.Read More
I had never even thought about being a part of a Pet therapy team until my Golden Retriever Bentley inspired me. His gentle soul and calm demeanor led me to seek out the Wagtime program at Akron City Hospital in Akron, Ohio. Bentley and I were a proud Pet Partners team for six years from 2011-2017.Read More
One of Piedmont Columbus Regional’s certified pet therapy dogs has lost its battle with cancer. Smudge, an 8-year-old Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, was active in our hospitals and at the John B. Amos Cancer Center as a member of the Play Paws Pet Therapy program for 6 years.Read More
Maggie #24 aka Maggie Moo, The Mags, Moo Moo or just Moo. Senior GRRAND Rescue with no known birth date – August 7, 2017. It is with a very heavy heart that I must share that sweet Moo crossed to the Rainbow Bridge today.Read More
Daisy Pollock was born with a purpose. From her first Pet Partner evaluation at 1 year and 1 month of age to what would be her last evaluation at 10 years old, Daisy brought years of comfort and care to patients and staff at VCU Health in Richmond, VA.Read more
Cassie’s life was full and rich as much as she filled and enriched the lives of others. Her grace, warmth, and unbridled love was given equally to those who knew her well and to those who only met her only briefly. Wherever she went she was eager to greet everyone with a wagging tail and a nudge as if to say, “Please, it’s OK to pet me.” She adored children and the feeling was mutual.Read more
Murungu excelled with the patients, making him the perfect fit for Diana’s volunteer work in a hospice care setting. He knew intuitively what patients needed and when they’d had enough. Best of all, he loved to snuggle with them in their beds – giving each a strong, warm hug.Read more
One of Buddy’s last visits was a meaningful connection with a woman who had just lost her own Golden Retriever.Read More
Sami shared Lexi with a local library and school for many years, and her passing has been remembered beautifully by the people she helped.Read More
Simone connected with patients in a way that their healthcare providers or caregivers often could not.Read More