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Martin: Canines Comfort During a Catastrophe 

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By Melissa Martin

Dog stories give us fuzzy feelings, giggles and guffaws, and comforting connections. And in the mist of the current pandemic, humans need uplifting animal tales. 

A two-legged dog from New Richmond, Ohio was named the 2020 Cadbury Bunny. The lovable coonhound is named after Lieutenant Dan, the character in “Forrest Gump” who lost his leg during the Vietnam War. Visit his Instagram account. 

Annie Rose, a therapy dog at Triple Creek Nursing Home in Cincinnati, Ohio visited via windows due to COVID-19. How cute! Annie Rose was dressed in a Mini Mouse outfit.

“Wynn, a service dog in training, is bringing joy and comfort to the medical staff on the front lines of the coronavirus fight in Denver. The one-year-old yellow Labrador serves up cuddles to health care workers who need a much needed mental break from the emergency room at Rose Medical Center,” according to an article by Amanda Jackson, CNN.

Rolo, a dachshund, because insta famous on Instagram when his tail stopped working. He was diagnosed with Happy Tail Syndrome by his veterinarian. Rolo, being so excited that his family stayed home due to coronavirus, wagged his tail into oblivion. But the pampered pooch is recovering. 

“Dogs laugh, but they laugh with their tails.” –Max Eastman

A “chatting” dog, a wiry 13-year-old Schnauzer, has become a celebrity since the pooch made an appearance on Facebook to give advice during pandemic. has a following on Instagram, too.

“If your dog thinks you’re the greatest person in the world, don’t seek a second opinion.” —Jim Fiebig

BluePath, based in Hopewell Junction, New York provides autism service dogs, offering safety, companionship and opportunities for independence. With the exception of a nominal equipment fee, BluePath dogs and lifetime follow-up support are provided free of charge.The nonprofit relies on fundraising, but BluePath’s annual gala has been postponed until October due the pandemic. Supporters have sought to raise money through a challenge grant of up to $5,000 in the first week of April.

My spouse and I have to spell squirrel, cat, toy, and peanut butter. When we say these words out loud, the dogs either engage in a bark fest, jump like a pole vaulter, race each other to the window or the backdoor, or sprint to the kitchen like Olympic competitors. During the coronavirus sheltering, we will not be saying any of these words.   

The great pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too. —Samuel Butler

Melissa Martin, Ph.D. is an author, columnist, educator, and therapist. She lives in Ohio. Contact her at

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