MIles

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Introducing Miles…Therapy Dog at ECCAC

DeFuniak Springs, FL (July 15, 2018)…Meet Miles, a recently trained Labradoodle therapy dog and his owner/handler, Shannon Garcia. Miles helps make the day a little better and brighter twice a week for child victims receiving services at the Pierce Family Children’s Advocacy Center in DeFuniak Springs.

Shannon is a licensed mental health therapist on staff with the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center (ECCAC).  Miles is only one-year old and Shannon got involved in the various training processes/classes for both herself and Miles this past year. The Labradoodle completed the AKC Canine Good Citizenship training and is currently in training for TCP (Therapy Patient Connections) Good Citizenship certification. 

  Shannon Garcia and her Labradoodle, Miles.

Shannon Garcia and her Labradoodle, Miles.

Marlin and Tiny

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Lisa Dunphy & Tiny 2018-3.jpg

Introducing Tiny and Marlin…Therapy Dogs at ECCAC

Niceville, FL  (July 15, 2018)…Meet Tiny and Marlin, trained therapy dogs and their owner/handlers, John and Lisa Dunphy. They help make the day a little better and brighter for child victims receiving services at the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center (ECCAC). 

Tiny is a Great Pyrenees and Marlin is a Border Collie. The Dunphy’s got the rescue dogs from a kennel in Kansas City. They have since passed the testing and training to be certified as TPC (Therapy Patient Connections) Good Citizenship Dogs. The Dunphy’s and their dogs have also been through training Animal Assisted Interaction classes. 

“We volunteer with Tiny and Marlin to help out every other week at ECCAC’s Niceville Center,” commented the Dunphy’s. “As well, we make visits to the Gulf Coast Treatment Center for young girls in Ft. Walton Beach and the Twin Cities Pavilion assisted living facility in Niceville.

  John Murphy with his Border Collie, Marlin.

John Murphy with his Border Collie, Marlin.

  Lisa Dunphy with her Great Pyrenees, Tiny.

Lisa Dunphy with her Great Pyrenees, Tiny.

Cody and Riley

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Jackqui Broadus & Cody 2018-3.jpg

Introducing Riley and Cody…Therapy Dogs at ECCAC

Niceville and DeFuniak Springs, FL  (July 15, 2018)…Meet Riley and Cody, trained therapy dogs and their owner/handler, Jacqui Broadus. They help make the day a little better and brighter for child victims receiving services at the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Centers (ECCAC) in Niceville and DeFuniak Springs.

Jacqui Broadus is a licensed Mental Health Counselor Supervisor on staff at ECCAC and a Registered Pet Partners Therapist. Jacqui took the lead in pet therapy programs at ECCAC beginning in 2010. That’s when she brought Riley, the adorable Maltese, who is also a Registered Pet Partner and an official AKC Distinguished Therapy Dog™, to ECCAC in Niceville to work with the kids. 

Riley sits in on group sessions and is also prescribed for individual therapy. He helps the kids learn self-confidence and the kids teach him tricks. In group sessions, he often instinctively sits in front of the child who feels the worst. In fact, according to the therapists, kids will tell Riley things they won’t tell them. The kids will say, “I’ll tell Riley, you can listen if you want.”

Then Jacqui also brought Cody in as an additional therapy dog to help Riley. Over the years, Jacqui and her trained four-legged partners have put in hundreds and hundreds of hours helping child victims. Riley is getting older and working his way towards retirement soon. Cody is going full steam ahead working a full time 40-hour week at the centers.

“When Jacqui brought Riley into the lives of ECCAC children, little did she know she would help create a legacy and new world of hope for children,” said ECCAC CEO Julie Hurst-Porterfield. “Our total of nine therapy dogs and their owners just absolutely warm the hearts and souls of the children and families we serve.”

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  Above - Jacqui Broadus and Riley, a Maltese. Below – Jacqui with Cody, a Malti-Poo.

Above - Jacqui Broadus and Riley, a Maltese. Below – Jacqui with Cody, a Malti-Poo.

Snoopy

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Introducing Snoopy…Therapy Dog at ECCAC

DeFuniak Springs, FL (July 15, 2018)…Meet Snoopy, a 5-year old trained Shih Tzu therapy dog from Alaqua Animal Refuge, and her owner/handler, Deb Hollis. Snoopy helps make the day a little better and brighter for child victims receiving services at the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Centers (ECCAC) in Niceville.  

Deb has spent 25 years as a mental health therapist and is also now practicing animal assistance therapy. Fourteen of those years she served in active military service in the Air Force, and over the last fourteen and a half years, Deb has been on staff with the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center in Niceville.

Snoopy received his basic training with Intermountain Therapy Animals and will be going into advanced training over the summer. “Snoopy and I just started our therapy animal journey at the beginning of 2018, He will receive AKC Good Citizenship training which will be completed by this fall,” said Deb, “It’s just amazing how well Snoopy adapts to so many situations with the kids.”

  Deb Hollis and her Shih Tzu, Snoopy.

Deb Hollis and her Shih Tzu, Snoopy.

Elsa

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Introducing Elsa…Therapy Dog at ECCAC

Niceville, FL (July 15, 2018)…Meet Elsa, a trained Great Pyrenees therapy dog and her owner/handler, Dan Holmes. Elsa helps make the day a little better and brighter for child victims receiving services at the Emerald Coast Children’s Advocacy Center (ECCAC) in Niceville.

Dan got Elsa at Alaqua Animal Refuge. He then went through six weeks of beginner obedience training, six weeks of intermediate obedience training and three weeks of training to enable an AKC Canine Good Citizen certification for Elsa. 

In the last fifteen months, Elsa and Dan have made 130 therapy dog visits, including one court appearance last December to help an ECCAC child victim deal with the stress of a court appearance. Basically, for four days of every week, Dan and Elsa volunteer by going to the Niceville ECCAC; remedial classes at Freeport Elementary where a child reads to Elsa; The Manor at Blue Water Bay; a visit to the Destin/FWB Airport to greet passengers; and they have just started going to the Rehabilitation Institute of Northwest Florida. Indeed, they keep one busy schedule spreading happiness and help to many.

  Dan Holmes and his Great Pyrenees, Elsa.

Dan Holmes and his Great Pyrenees, Elsa.

Dozier

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Introducing Dozier…Therapy Dog at ECCAC

DeFuniak Springs, FL (July 15, 2018)…Meet Dozier, a trained Great Dane therapy dog and his owner/handler, Angie Nousiainen. Once a month, Dozier and Angie help make the day a little better and brighter for child victims receiving services at the Pierce Family Children’s Advocacy Center in DeFuniak Springs.

Dozier completed four levels of obedience classes at Dog Max, Inc. At 14 months old, Dozier received his Canine Good Citizen Award before being accepted into Therapy Dogs, Inc.  The Alliance of Therapy Dogs, based in Michigan, carries a $5 million liability insurance policy on Dozier.

According to Angie, “Dozier and I visit the lobby area at the center and I have to be within two feet of him at all times. Also, I keep Dozier at least three feet away from other dogs,”

  Angie Nousiainen and her Great Dane, Dozier.

Angie Nousiainen and her Great Dane, Dozier.

Annie

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Introducing Annie… Therapy Dog at ECCAC

Meet Annie, a trained Border Collie therapy dog and her owner/handler, Kathy Kent. Once a week, Annie and Kathy help make the day a little better and brighter for child victims receiving services at the Pierce Family Children’s Advocacy Center in DeFuniak Springs.

Trained from when she was a puppy, Annie is certified by TDI (Therapy Dogs International). The now 3 year-old Annie has been in numerous AKC Championship competitions earning many titles such as Herding, Lure Course and Barn Hunt. Kathy has a total of four dogs, of which two are therapy dogs, and she has been showing her dogs in competition for seventeen years.

  Kathy Kent and her Border Collie, Annie

Kathy Kent and her Border Collie, Annie