My husband and I rescued Turbo on February 18, 2005. He was 10 months old when we rescued him and we were his third home. I couldn't imagine why his previous owners didn't keep him; other than he was meant to be ours. Turbo was house trained, crate trained and knew his basic commands when he came to us. He was such a cute dog with a big personality.
At the time that we rescued him I was working for Life Matters Counseling. I had come across an article about the benefits of using animals in therapy. My mind immediately went to my Turbo dog. I knew he'd be great at that job! We spent several months getting the necessary training through Intermountain Therapy Animals and the Delta Society. Turbo was so determined and focused, but unfortunately he failed his first test. He was not able to stay when I walked away. Turbo followed me everywhere, so that part of the test took additional training. He worked very hard and on January 29, 2006 he passed his test with flying colors! Turbo was a natural and was always eager to go to work, even in his last days. He worked in groups and with individuals. The girls in the groups that I ran would dote on him and sneak him treats. He was always able to keep everything calm even when tensions arose.
I ventured out on my own a few years later and opened my own practice; Hope Haven Counseling. Turbo was a great marketing tool as everyone wanted to see the therapist with the dog. He was a great ice breaker, especially with teens and reluctant clients. Turbo could sense when clients were upset and was quick to snuggle up with them, give them kisses and lick their tears away. Turbo bonded with many of my clients over the years and could sense when a few of his favorite ones entered the waiting room. My office was the last one down the hall, but I knew if one of his special friends arrived, because his ears would perk up and he would be chomping at the bits to get out and run to welcome them.
Turbo was always loyal to those he loved and cared about. His love was unconditional and he loved you from day one. Being my first therapy dog, I didn't realize how hard the news of his cancer would be on my clients. Even clients that had only been working with him for a few weeks, shed tears. Turbo had lung cancer, which caused his breathing to be very labored and didn't allow him much time after his diagnosis. He was strong and brave and allowed many of our clients the opportunity to say their good-byes. Turbo was loyal to the end and has left a hole in my heart and an emptiness in my world. I truly believe after watching Turbo and the amazing job he did and the love and trust that our clients developed for him; that therapy animals are very powerful healing tools. I will search for another sweet soul to carry on his great legacy. I'll see you at the Rainbow Bridge my sweet Turbo dog!
April 17, 2004-March 25, 2016