LCC K-9 Comfort Dog Cubby (Redeemer Lutheran Church, Fort Collins, Colorado) and her handlers started working with Lutheran Family Services Rocky Mountains (LFSRM) a few years ago with their Foster Care and Family Services Program. Cubby Comfort Dog meets with foster kids and parents in their separate groups about four times a year. Recently Cubby was requested for a different reason.
On Monday, July 27, Cubby was invited to meet with two children and their therapist. Prior to the children arriving, Cubby was introduced to two of the LFSRM therapists. They thoroughly enjoyed their time with Cubby and they talked about how stressful it has been to be doing all virtual visits during the COVID-19 Pandemic. We informed them what Cubby usually does and what she has been doing during the pandemic.
Cubby then went to meet with a 5-year-old boy and a 7-year-old girl and their therapist. They laid on the floor with Cubby as they pet her. The girl was especially attentive to Cubby and could not believe how good and calm she was. We demonstrated several of Cubby’s commands. The overwhelming favorite was "lap"! The therapist and the kids loved giving Cubby hugs while Cubby did the lap command. The girl made an origami heart for Cubby and wrote a message that said "I LOVE YOU Cubby! on it. We gave them each a stuffie, coloring book, and dog tag. Later, we all went outside and met with the (foster mother) as the therapist demonstrated some calming techniques to use before bedtime.
Cubby showed the kids how she remains calm by lying on her blanket as the kids took turns petting her. We hope to be invited back soon to help the therapists as they work with foster children and their parents.