Meet Moses, the Emotional Support Dog

Moses, a black Labrador Retriever puppy, joined the TBIRC family on Monday, April 2 as an emotional support animal in-training.

Animal therapy plays an increasing role in recovery, particularly for people suffering from anxiety and depression. At the center, caring for Moses provides another vocation for survivors. Training a puppy is a way to help survivors transition through the awkwardness of social situations by learning boundaries and discipline. Survivors also share a sense of purpose as they work to raise a puppy.

Labrador and golden retrievers and among the top breeds recognized for their loyalty, intelligence and ease of training. In selecting Moses, we looked for a dog strong in temperament and with a clean health record. Championship blood lines are not important in selecting a support dog. Rather, it was Moses laid-back calmness that drew us to him.  We suspect he will grow to fill his big paws.  At 11 weeks, he already weighed 4 pounds more than his other litter mates!

On a typical morning, Moses is eager to get to work. He arrives at the center around 10 AM. The first task on his list is greeting everyone, especially on the days when the speech group meets. Following the group session, he gathers his toys and then seeks out someone to spend the day with. He can be found at the feet of a survivor chewing on one of his toys or cuddling on the couch with a volunteer.
When asked how he got his name, Jackie Moore remarked. “Two names came to me. If he were a chocolate lab, his name would be Abraham. If he were a black lab, it would be Moses.” Moses, or Moe for short, is an old soul that has found a place in our hearts.

WTVG, 13abc, payed a visit to introduce Moses to its viewers and interview survivors.