Rex is a great example of what can happen when people with a passion come together.
Rex came to Kids and Canines as one of two donated puppies. He was full of energy and confidence from day one. As a puppy Rex spent his first months socializing and learning basic puppy skills with families and individuals who volunteered as foster parents (a.k.a. puppy raisers) to our program dogs.
At 4 months Rex found himself being trained by 16 students in our Dorothy Thomas Program. At 6 months Rex moved in with the girls at Hillsborough Girls Academy (HGA), Dept. of Juvenile Justice as part of our DJJ Program where the girls spent six months training and caring for him.
This placement was a huge success. In fact, not one of the trainers in HGA received a disciplinary action while in our program. One girl even went on to get a job at a local animal hospital after being released from HGA.
We are pleased that Rex was placed with a family who was not only looking for a dog but one that could help a family member who was in the special forces and suffers from PTSD. Tony, Rex’s new owner states, “Rex has helped me in many ways. I believe the work that Kids and Canines has done is to train Rex, by design, to read my emotions and help remind me when I need to keep myself in check. He not only provides comfort but serves as a barometer of sorts for me.” Tony’s wife, Stephanie, commented, “Having Rex minds us all as a family, especially when we watch him at play, that it is good to live in the moment.”
Rex proves that we can empower children and change lives … all through the love of one dog. Thank you to those who gave their time, opened their homes and provided support to make this all happen.
Click here to hear Tony’s story as captured by Meredyth Censullo, WFLA.