Therapy Golden Retriever Molly — loving her job

Furry bundle of cheer best kind of therapy
BY MEGAN REITER, Times Tribune staff writer

HONESDALE — When Molly walks into the room at the Good Shepherd-Wayne Memorial Inpatient Rehabilitation Center, every patient has a smile waiting for her. But Molly isn’t the patients’ favorite therapist — she’s their favorite therapy dog. Every other Monday, she and her owner, Leslie Dennis, visit with patients, who have the opportunity to pet Molly or throw her toys for a game of fetch. “It’s one of our best-kept secrets,” said Hope Wormuth, an occupational therapist at Wayne Memorial Hospital.

Molly has been visiting the unit for about two months, but the 5-year-old golden retriever has been a therapy dog for years. Mrs. Dennis volunteers her time and also takes Molly to a local nursing home and a program for at-risk teens. And Molly, who was wearing a fluffy, green St. Patrick’s Day collar, loves every minute of the attention she receives.

“Basically, I’m just her chauffeur, but I’ve met some fabulous people,” Mrs. Dennis said.

There is more . . .

Golden Retriever Spinnaker fits right in


Door’s always open at this pastor’s place

Judy and the Rev. Dr. Thomas Niblock sit with their dog Spinnaker on a landing. The dog is so used to visitors that he doesn’t even bark at them anymore, Niblock jokes. 10-year-old golden retriever, Spinnaker, nicknamed Spin, does like to mingle with the guests when he’s not snoozing at the top of the grand staircase.

Golden Retriever Mr. Bear – in – training

These pups will be someone’s eyes
Foster families help some waggly tailed ruckuses get ready for jobs as guide dogs.
By CHANDRA BROADWATER, photo by Keri Wiginton

Mr. Bear relaxes beneath the table while Barbara Dupree and Steve Whitaker have lunch at Country Kitchen in Brooksville last week. Dupree brings the golden retriever everywhere to get him acclimated to people and public spaces.

BROOKSVILLE – With his head resting on a paw, Mr. Bear sits quietly by the desk of Hernando Human Resources director Barbara Dupre.

It’s 11 a.m., an hour before Dupre will head out with the fluffy 8-month-old golden retriever for lunch. Taking the dog with her everywhere is part of raising a puppy for Southeastern Guide Dogs of Palmetto, something Dupre is doing for the first time.

Just as he will do at the Country Kitchen, Mr. Bear, the future guide dog, continues to quietly sit and doze as Dupre flutters through papers on her desk.

In her government center office, a blue leash connects him to a chair where it is looped through a plastic arm. But that really isn’t necessary – even without it, Mr. Bear wouldn’t move unless he was told to.

There is more . . .