#036: Texas Junior Therapy Dog team Holden and Millie

by | June 6, 2022 | Therapy Dog Talk

Texas Junior Therapy Dog team Holden and Millie

Being a Junior Therapy Dog team with her pup Millie is the beginning of a dog-centered career for Holden.

In this 36th episode of Therapy Dog Talk, I chat with Holden and her charming yellow labrador, Millie, about their inspiring work volunteering through Aggieland Pets with a Purpose as a Junior Therapy Dog team in College Station, Texas. We focus on their experiences visiting memory care residents and the impact they’ve made.

Holden shares the story of how her love for dogs started in 4th grade when she saw Therapy Dogs helping college students at Texas A&M. From that moment, her dream of working with dogs grew stronger. Millie’s friendly nature and natural ability to connect with people make her an ideal therapy dog.

Together, they’ve been a Junior Therapy Dog team for three years, starting when they were just 14 and 1 years old. Despite the challenges brought on by the pandemic, Holden and Millie recently celebrated a milestone of 100 visits!

Holden emphasizes the importance of understanding your dog’s limits and being prepared for anything during visits. She also shares her joy in making connections with the residents in nursing homes and building lasting friendships with them.

Throughout our conversation, we discuss the essential items that they bring on their visits, such as a lint roller, dog booties, bandanas, a dog bowl, water, treats, and a binder with notes from residents. Holden’s mom joins them on visits, and they plan to continue making visits together even after Holden turns 18.

By the end of this episode, you’ll gain valuable insights into the life of a Junior Therapy Dog team, the joys and challenges they face, and the incredible impact they have on the people they visit. Listen in to be inspired by Holden and Millie’s heartwarming story.

In this episode, we discuss …

  • How Holden’s first experience with Therapy Dogs inspired her to work with dogs.
  • What it’s like to connect with residents in memory care and how they’ve impacted Holden.
  • An important reminder to know your dog’s limits and be ready to advocate for them.

Key moments you won’t want to miss:

  • [01:44] Holden’s love for dogs began in 4th grade when she saw Therapy Dogs helping college students relieve stress at Texas A&M.
  • [02:09] Inspired by Therapy Dogs, young Holden dreamed of becoming a Certified Dog Trainer one day.
  • [02:25] In 6th grade, Holden read “Until Tuesday,” a book about a Service Dog named Tuesday, further fueling her passion for working with dogs.
  • [02:52] After Aggieland Pets with a Purpose visited her school library, Holden talked to her parents about becoming a Therapy Dog handler.
  • [03:43] Millie joined Holden and her family at just seven weeks old, and they began working with a trainer.
  • [04:21] Holden and Millie have been a Junior Therapy Dog team for 3 years, starting when they were 14 and 1 years old.
  • [04:59] Celebrating a milestone, Holden and Millie recently passed 100 visits together!
  • [06:15] Millie’s amazing ability to work a room and check in with everyone before focusing on one-on-one time.
  • [07:45] Important advice from Holden: be prepared for anything on visits, understand your dog’s limits, and expect to get attached.
  • [09:03] Holden’s mom joins them on visits and plans to continue even after Holden turns 18 because they enjoy the experience together.

I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I do. Give it a watch or a listen and then let me know in the community which part you found the most helpful!

Mentioned in this episode:

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