PET THERAPY AND THE AIR FORCE

By Wednesday, December 11, 2019 10 No tags Permalink

It’s Wordless Wednesday, so I’ll be brief…

Pet therapy and the Air Force was never the dream-team I foresaw coming together, but in November they certainly did…

Charleston Joint Air Force Base reached out and invited/solicited our pet therapy teams for a couple of hours in honor of October’s “Emotional Wellness Month” observance – 

Stress can have adverse affects on our physical health, and when left unchecked, it can lead to chronic conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and obesity. To raise awareness about the importance of mental well-being, October is observed as Emotional Wellness Month.

National Today

*Originally scheduled during the month of October, we had to reschedule due to dignitaries on the installation.

OUR MISSION – 

They requested 6-8 teams come and visit individual Combat Ready Centers. They wanted their military personnel to de-stress and enjoy the presence of a therapy dog. Several units had been on high alert for months resulting in long overdue leave. 

Jaxson is my “special events” therapy Dood. His energy level is always so high he does well in these environments.

Translation? He’s always “on” the entire time, however I never work him too much. Don’t want him stressed...

Six teams met at the main gate. They were each driven by detailed air personnel to the post veterinarian. That is where we linked up. The vet wanted to see each dog, and look at vaccination records.

We were then escorted to separate Combat Readiness Centers.

Jaxson and I stopped at the Combat Video Center first.

These are the brave men and women who travel to all the combat zones and capture everything!

They chose not to discuss “what they do” or “what they’ve seen” so we focused all our attention and conversation on Jaxson…

Next we visited a huge airplane warehouse hanger where we looked at all the nuclear chemical gear they wear for training and real maneuvers. 

When I put the gas mask on, Jaxson wasn’t sure who I was…

The mask wasn’t heavy or uncomfortable – but then again, I only had it on for a few minutes. Some of them have worn it for hours and/or days. Didn’t know that I could drink through a straw with it on either…

One volunteer was able to tour the fighter planes. Talk about a memorable experience…

EMOTIONAL WELLNESS – 

Emotional wellness is real. Even if you don’t work in an environment where consequences can be life or death – you still need to slow down a little. 

Learn to take a break from your hectic schedules.

Breathe…

I’ve already heard back from the Staff Sergeant who I spent my time with. According to him, the Base Wing Commander was so impressed with the feedback, he is interested in having us return to see other air personnel. 

Up, Up and Away…

Create a life that feels good on the inside too ❤️

Wordless Wednesday is a simple blog post featuring a photo which conveys a message that speaks for itself without using words.

But sometimes we break the rules #alittle – and use words #sshhhh

Steal a few minutes from your day, sit back and check out the creative geniuses behind this list of blog posts below…

10 Comments
  • Ducky's Mom
    December 11, 2019

    Oh, WOW! That sounds wonderful! I would have loved the tour of the plane!! Lucky Pup (and handler)!! Thanks for all you do!!

    • Cathy Bennett
      January 6, 2020

      He’s still talking about how large the plane was!

  • Sandee
    December 11, 2019

    What a wonderful experience. Your babies helped for sure. Nothing better to relieve stress than pups or cats. Just saying. Lovely post.

    Thank you for joining the Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop.

    Have a fabulous Wordless Wednesday. Scritches to the pups. ♥

    • Cathy Bennett
      January 6, 2020

      If everyone had a dog or a cat what a wonderful world this could be 🙂

  • Tails Around the Ranch
    December 11, 2019

    What a cool opportunity to bring smiles to others. Well done you guys!

    • Cathy Bennett
      January 6, 2020

      Thank you my friend!

  • Lindsay
    December 12, 2019

    That’s AMAZING, Cathy. 🙂 What a wonderful, memorable experience. Love that you’ll be going back it sounds like, too!

    That plane is enormous, holy crap!!

    XOX

    • Cathy Bennett
      January 6, 2020

      I have even more pups interested now. So I am crossing fingers and paws that we get a formal invite back. I’ll keep you posted.

  • Jan K
    December 15, 2019

    What a wonderful idea someone had to help out our military! I’m so glad it was a success and may happen some more. Jaxson is definitely a natural for helping people to de-stress! Love this.

    • Cathy Bennett
      January 6, 2020

      It looks like they want us to come back! That’s a great thing. The airmen and women seemed to really enjoy having the dogs around.

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