Tommy Shelter dog to therapy dog

Tommy's Story

Tommy was brought in on a cold Friday night with ten other dogs from a hoarding situation. Ventura County Animal Services (VCAS) took all ten dogs in at once with the hope of finding them new forever homes. Tommy caught our eye. He came right up to the edge of his cage as if to say PICK ME! He was a natural when we went in to test him. He is very friendly and LOVES attention. A great trait for a future therapy dog.

He was neutered then taken to the R.U.F.F. Road (Rehabilitation Utilizing Furry Friends) therapy dog training program at the Todd Road Jail. He was paired with 2 female inmates. At first, he ate like he had not had enough food for some time. Then as the days passed he looked up at us as if to say wow the food just keeps coming and someone is here all the time to pay attention and love me!

We imagine being in a home with 15 dogs he didn't get any one on one attention. But now he is in the R.U.F.F. Road dog training program and is on the road to becoming a therapy dog.

Our best guess is that he is a chi/french bulldog mix, about 5 years old. He weighs 20lb and has a muscular build. And yes you can teach an old dog new tricks. He is progressing nicely even though he was added to the program a few weeks after the start date.

Tommy is named after Sergeant Thomas Collins. Sergeant Collins died when the helicopter he was flying crashed into the Santa Clara riverbed. Tom started the helicopter unit for the Ventura County Sheriff's Department in 1971. Before working for the Department, he flew helicopters for the Navy. As a Naval Lieutenant, Tom was the youngest commissioned officer at that time. We want to thank Sergent Tom Collins for his service and plan to have Tommy carry on serving the community by doing therapy work with in his name.

How Can You Help With Tommy's Training?

  • VIP Mutt Poster - Any amount you would like to give: (the poster is $250).
    • So Robbie can help spread the word about VIP G.O.T. Dogs  (Goal Oriented Therapy Dogs)
  • Food (for 6 weeks) - $60
  • Training Treats (for four weeks) - $20
  • Heart Guard and Nex Guard (for six months) - $195
  • Pet Insurance (for 1 month) - $24
  • Therapy Vest - $25
  • Training Harness & Leash - $45
  • Crate & Bed - $54
  • Private Training (1 hour) - $100
  • Please let us know if you want your gift to be a monthly donation   (you can stop it at any time).
  • Or give us a High FIVE. Donate $5.00 a month and help us train therapy dogs for our community.

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