Police Dog Billie had been retired from being a police dog, because he had arthritis, his handler was very sad to say goodbye to Billie. Billie also had been sad for a while, but now he was happy again, as he had been retrained as a service dog and an emotional support dog. Billie was especially happy as he was the first dog to be trained to give emotional support to anyone who needs him. Billie loves his new life and this is his story and the adults and children he meets and helps.
Billie's new owner is Peter and has owned Billie for just over a year now. Maybe you are wondering what is a service dog? A service dog is trained to assist a person who has a disability, After Billie's training as a service dog, his trainers realised very quickly, that Billie could help so many more people by being trained as an emotional support dog, so Billie was trained as an emotional support dog. This happened because one of the trainers suffers from depression, Billie had never met him before, but immediately started to nuzzle his leg and sit by him. Everyone was amazed and knew then that Billie would make an amazing emotional support dog.
Billie loved Friday's, Friday was the morning he went to the airport. Billie and his owner, had been going there for 3 months now. A lot of people were scared of flying and Billie sensed this in people, so as he walked around the airport, if he sensed someone was scared, he would sit by them. Peter his owner, would then tell them he was an emotional support dog and asked them if they would like to stroke him and hug him. Billie loved this part of his work, because as they stroked him, he could see their smile appear and he felt them relaxing.
Children, adults young and old, Billie helped them relax and put a smile on their faces. Yes, Billie really did love Friday's, in fact so much, he always made sure his owner was up bright and early, sometimes too early. Billie had really enjoyed being a police dog, he loved all the excitement and helping his owner/handler, but Billie is also enjoying this new chapter in his life and helping so many people. It really was his favourite day, because after the airport, he was off to the retirement home and spend the afternoon with it's residents, but first they were off to the woods, so that Billie could have a good run.
Albert had been at the retirement home for 3 months, he never had really spoken to anyone, except the staff and spends most of his time in his room. Everyone has tried to talk with him, but Albert preferred to be on his own and stayed in his room and watched TV. Billie had been coming to the retirement home for over 2 months and slowly had been getting closer to Albert. But still Albert would not talk to the other guests, until today, because today Billie saw his opportunity, Albert was in his room watching TV and on the arm was his remote control. Within a few seconds Billie was in and out of the room with the remote in his mouth, went to the living room, dropped the remote on the floor and with his paw pushed it under a chair. Peter his owner had been watching and laughed, he knew what Billie was up to.
A few minutes later Albert came into the living room and asked Peter if he had seen his remote control, Peter told him he hadn't, but he knew someone who might. Albert asked him "who?" Peter replied "oh you are standing right next to him." Albert looked down at Billie and raised his finger, Billie thought he was going to tell him off, but instead Albert said "okay, you win, I will start talking to people." Billie did not move and Albert knew he was not going to get his remote back, until Billie saw him talking to the other guests. So Albert went out and came back with a couple of other guests and started to talk to them. Billie then retrieved the remote and put it on Albert's lap. Albert patted Billie's head and said "thank you Billie."
There was another person that Billie enjoyed visiting and that was Janet, sadly Janet had Alzheimer's, which effected her memory. Janet's brother came to visit her often, but Janet got lonely, however, every time she saw Billie, her face lit up. Billie was very in tune with Janet and would sit by her and watch her, when she started to look for something, more often it was her glasses or room key, Billie would shoot off and find them and place them on her lap. There was a very strong bond between them, which everyone could see with their own eyes. Often Janet would get lost in the retirement home, Billie would come to the rescue, sit by her and then when Janet was ready would lead her to where she needed to go. As Janet needed a structure to follow, she had a timetable, which Billie had learnt and watched where everyone was going and guided Janet there.
Peter was talking to Albert and two other people, when he realised Billie had disappeared. "Shall we look for him?" Said Albert. Peter smiled and said "it's okay, I have a very good idea where he is." The others followed Peter, all the way to the dining room, where they found Billie guarding the only cake in the whole dining room. Peter told them, he won't touch the cake, but he has a very sweet tooth, it's not good for his diet, but once in a while he is allowed some. Albert smiled and asked Peter "can he have a piece today, he really has been amazing today?" Peter giggled and said "yes of course Albert, would you like to give him some cake?" Albert nodded and gave Billie some cake, everyone looked on and thought was this the same Albert. A true friendship had really developed between Billie and Albert, no longer would Albert be lonely, even when he was surrounded by so many people.
On the road that Billie lives on, is a lovely little boy called Sam. One day Billie and his owner were walking past Sam's home, when Billie suddenly sat down and would not move. Billie's owner looked at Billie and said "what is it Billie?" Billie did no more than jumped the gate and sat at Sam's front door and barked. Sam's mum opened the door and Billie's owner said " I am really sorry, I don't know what's got into him." At that moment Sam ran out and dropped to his knees and put his arms round Billie and Billie nuzzled Sam's head. With that Sam's mum invited them in for a cup of coffee. As they had coffee Sam's mum told Billie's owner how Sam had changed not wanting to go to school, was very sad and spent hours in his room.
Billie was playing on the floor with Sam, he was laughing and Sam's mum turned to Billie's owner and said "that is amazing, Sam has not laughed for months." Billie's owner sat on the floor with Billie and Sam and said to Sam "Would you tell Billie what is wrong, as you can see Billie has big ears and is a great listener?" Sam nodded and then told Billie, how he was being bullied by 2 boys in the year above him, because he was brainy and wore glasses. Sam's mum straight away got on the phone to Sam's school and arranged to see the Headmaster next day to sort the problem out. "Sam, I am going to take Billie for a walk on the common, would you and your mum like to come too?" Sam nodded and rushed to get his coat and that afternoon Sam and his mum enjoyed a lovely walk. At the end of the walk Sam's mum bent down and hugged Billie and said "thank you Billie."
Another time Billie enjoyed was twice a month he spent time with the Anderson family, where he gave support to the whole family. It could be simply just spending time with them in the house, if the weather was bad, or if the weather was good, going on their favourite walk. In the summer they had a small swimming pool and Billie loved splashing about in it, with the family and chasing a small plastic ball.
The mother was sadly quite poorly and the father looked after her full time, the daughter was amazing helping as much as she could. The mother said to everyone that her daughter had become a little mum. She was so grateful when Billie came, as her daughter could be a child again while Billie was there. Billie seem to know this and had great fun with the daughter, chasing her around the garden and just sometimes lying on the bed with her.
Summer was a time that Billie enjoyed the most, as there were so many fun things to do. One of his favourite times, is when a local club organised a day by the sea, for children whose families could not afford to take their children there. So on the day Billie was really excited, as he loved travelling by coach and being with the children. After 2 hours they were by the sea and after lunch they headed for the beach, this is the part Billie loved the most, being in the water with the children. He loved how they splashed about and loved chasing Billie around. Suddenly Billie saw another dog, all ready to go in the shower, he asked the dog what was going on, the dog giggled and said "my owner, said come on, we are going to bathe and I thought he said we were going to have a bath." Billie laughed so much under his woof's.
The children had a wonderful afternoon on the beach and before going home everyone had fish and chips, yes including Billie, he absolutely loved fish and chips, not as much as cake, but it was a close second. The coach arrived back home and when the adults stood up and looked around to tell the children, they were back, every single one of them was asleep, including Billie, who was stretched out on the back seat snoring.
One of Billie's favourite jobs, was visiting Betty, Betty was all alone in the world, so she enjoyed when Billie came to visit. Mind you, Billie loved going there Betty made the most amazing tasty cakes. This particular day Billie and his owner had some good news for Betty, a new club had started a month ago, where Betty could go every Thursday, have some lunch, a game of bingo and a good old chat. They had even arranged for Betty to be picked up and then bought home, Betty was so happy she gave Billie's owner a kiss and Billie a big hug. Billie and his owner had met Betty a few months ago, when Betty was shopping and a robber had snatched her handbag, luckily for Betty, Billie saw the robber, chased him and caught him. Billie held onto the robber, until the police arrived, one of the officers recognised Billie and patted him and said "well done Billie, it's good you still remembered your training."
A couple of weeks later on their next visit to Betty, they heard how much Betty loved the club and how already she had made a couple of friends and that one actually lives on the same road. Betty went on to say that Billie should come and visit the club, Billie looked at his owner and his owner smiled and nodded. Then Billie looked at Betty and Betty burst out laughing and said "Yes, Billie, they have cake. " With that Billie jumped on the chair, as if to say, hey I am ready, when are we going?" Betty and Billie's owner laughed and told Billie, the next time Betty goes to the club, they could go too.
Once a month Billie goes to the airport for a special meeting, the airport runs classes for people who are scared of flying, who want to fly but are too scared to. At the end of the afternoon, all the people take a short flight on a plane and hopefully are not too scared of flying anymore. Billie's owner gets so many Thank you cards from people who have attended these classes and said how much Billie has helped. Billie doesn't know what all the fuss is about, he just lets them pat him and if he senses someone is really scared, he just sits by them.
Billie is even allowed to go air side with them as they board the plane and he sits by the plane door as they go on. They pat him, say thank you to his owner as they board. Billie waits for the plane to land and is there waiting as the plane door opens, he loves this part, as he gets so many hugs and if he is very lucky his owner is given a cake for him to have later and we all know how much Billie loves cake.
One of the best things Billie loved to do, was visit the local primary school, where he attended the class for children who had trouble reading. Billie used to arrive early with his owner, as all the children loved to pat Billie and say hello. When the teacher was ready, Billie used to lie down, as the children concentrated on their reading. The children loved having Billie in the classroom, as he relaxed them, as they read to the teacher. After the class finished, the children knew they could spend time with Billie before he had to leave. Nobody could understand it, but by just having Billie in the room, their reading improved.
After a week of seeing everybody, Billie liked nothing more, than a run in his favourite forest with his owner. Billie loved everyone he saw during the week, but this was his special reward and there was nothing else he liked than running free, well except maybe cake. Billie says "woof, woof" and will see you very soon.