Bootsie came to her owner, Jo Bedding, through Newf Rescue. Once rehomed, Bootsie developed a special talent for communicating with those who can’t, or don’t, speak. Take Bootsie’s recent visit to a seniors’ home, for example. One day she walked into the TV Room where a new resident was slumped in a wheelchair, not responding to the nurse who was trying to engage him in conversation.
Have you ever tried to ignore a Newfoundland dog? Especially one who sticks her face into yours? It’s pointless. Bootsie licked the man’s face. He looked up, smiled and spoke his first words after arriving at the residence: “What a beautiful dog.”
As a therapy dog certified to work with kids as well as adults, Bootsie also visits a secondary school class with autistic children and a community home where young adults are non-verbal and must deal with other challenges. One day when Bootsie and Jo were visiting the community house they noticed a young man who reportedly had been on the couch all morning. When Bootsie went to him, he crawled off the couch, curled up under Bootsie's considerable head, then laughed and giggled while he touched those Newfoundlander eyes and ears. Bootsie was a patient therapist, allowing the young man to make friends in the most meaningful way. There were no words – but plenty of communication.