Get out of your comfort zone, learn how to do something you never thought possible

roxie-award-blog
This past weekend Roxie the Doxie and I traveled to Joliet, Illinois to compete in a Nose Work competition, level 1.  Nose work is a sport where the dog is trained to locate the source of a specific odor: birch, anise, and clove.  The very tiny amount, super tiny, is put on a Q-tip and placed in a small container and hidden.  The dog has to find the container and “alert” the handler.  They have to search in four different elements: exteriors,  interiors,  in containers, and on vehicles.  No easy task!

For vehicles, there are three cars and the scent is hidden on only one of them. In the container … Read More...

Wait, Are You Comparing a Dog to a Child in Your Book?

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A well meaning person asked me this one day. Without having read the book, their impression was that I was comparing the adoption of a dog to the adoption of a child.
The answer in short, is of course not!

Roxie’s journey from foster care to her forever home is intended to be a fun children’s book, but can also be used to elicit from children feelings and thoughts about the adoption process, or any change in the family unit.

From the Book: Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home
From the Book: Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home

As clinicians, parents and teachers know, kids tend to talk about their feelings, especially feelings that are new, confusing, scary … Read More...

Never Give Up – Adopting From a Foreign Country

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Story by Chris Baumann

I am a true believer that things happen for a reason. On my very first Medical Mission trip to Nicaragua, in 1989, I had the privilege to visit the El Deviño Niño orphanage in Managua, Nicaragua.  It was actually an old Samoza army barracks. I saw those sad but beautiful faces, peering out of the small crate like containments, as they wondered who we were. There were at least 100 kids, under 8 years old…that had little to no chance of ever having family of their own.

I always wanted kids, but due to all kinds of circumstances, it just never worked out. When I saw … Read More...

How Old is Too Old to Adopt?

More people are adopting in later life than ever. While generally age is no barrier, (nor is being single or not owning a home) being too old is a topic that comes up when people adopt later in life.

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While adopters have to be over 21, it seems generally adoption agencies are looking for parents who have stable lives, financial ability and the potential to provide care and support to their child or children.

So, I took an internet stroll through a few US and UK adoption agencies and looked at their age guidelines and what I found was found was both sensible and consistent. You must be at least … Read More...

The Therapeutic Value of Animals – It’s Not Just a Dog Story

From the Book: Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home
From the Book: Roxie the Doxie Finds Her Forever Home

Having worked with kids in a therapeutic setting, I was always fascinated by the manner in which children will relate to animals when they are experiencing distress or uncomfortable feelings. This is what drove me to use Roxie as a character that would allow kids to discuss their own feelings in a safe and non threatening way.

Both real and fictional animals have been used for years to assist children and teens who are struggling with difficult situations, emotional issues, kids who are on the autism spectrum has shown to benefit from equine and canine therapy.

In the story and … Read More...