11 January 2015

Goodbye Brax

We recently found out about a need for a service dog at a local non profit school with a class of foster children with learning disabilities.  Their special education teacher was looking for a golden retriever or Labrador retriever that could be trained as a therapy dog, and would live with the teacher's family and accompany him to the school everyday to be a companion to the 4 students in his class. 

As soon as we heard about it, we thought of our yellow lab, Brax. Brax is such a well behaved dog and he gets along so well with all people, that we knew he would be a perfect fit. It was kind of sad to think of giving Brax away, but as we explained it to our boys, Brax will be so good for those children at the school who don't have all the same blessings and opportunities that we enjoy. It will really be a great thing to do. And since Brax loves everyone and has never been especially particular about which people he is with as long as he gets to spend time with people and get lots of love and attention, we were confident that his transition to this new life would not be difficult for him at all. (And although he has always been good with other dogs, he cares much more about people and tennis balls than playing with any other dog, so he shouldn't have a hard time with being separated from Harley at all).  

Brax will get to go and be a therapy dog at the school each day, and the school has a large new soccer field and track where the class plays and walks every day, and Brax can play fetch to his heart's content.  And then when he's not at the school he will live with the special education teacher and his young family. We were very impressed with the teacher -- he seems like he will be a responsible and caring dog owner, he is very active, and they will make Brax a part of their family.  So Brax will get to spend his days with children at the school, and will still get to be around young children at home too -- he will continue to get (and give) all the attention he loves. 

When we told our boys some of them seemed a little sad, but they were pleased that Brax gets to go be a service dog for those kids who need him more. (And it probably makes it a little easier for them since they still have Harley). They said their goodbyes and Camden wrote a little letter and drew a picture for the children in Brax's new class. Isaac also drew a picture of himself with Brax to send along with him. And then Brax was off to his new home and lots of exciting adventures.  When the teacher came to pick him up, Brax was such a good boy and he wagged his tail the whole way as they walked away. He will be happy, and will really be the perfect dog for this job. 

Since Brax left, the boys have actually seemed fine so far. In his prayer this morning Camden even said "we are thankful that Brax could go to be a service dog for the kids in that school."  And, of course, the boys have been asking when we can get another dog again. 

We assured them that we would adopt another dog soon -- there are so many shelter dogs out there that need homes, I'm sure it won't be long before we find another one to be part of our family. 

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