Sugar, Therapeutic Companion Service Animal
by Rhonda Roberts
My story starts with a Little Papillon no bigger than a minute. She was full of life, had more spunk than most dogs I've ever owned and whatever you do don't tell her that she really wasn't a short Rottweiler!! She was determined to take care of me no matter what, and that included protecting me.
First I should say that Yes, she was a Service Dog. She was a Therapeutic Companion Fur Family Member (I have no pets, just Fur family members!) She was my constant Companion 24/7. I suffer with a Chronic Bowel Disorder, Crohn's Disease that has left me disabled now for going on 26 years. With that I have faced many times of Stress, Anxiety, Anguish, and debilitating Depression which sometimes kept me isolated for weeks on end. I always had SUGAR to count on though, she never let me down, she never left my side. Regardless of my day, rather good or rather bad, she was there. She was the ONE and ONLY constant in my life, the only thing I could count on.
Most people don't recognize small dogs as having the ability to serve. It really depends on the task at hand; for me and my needs she was Perfect In Every Way.
And again the issue of Mental illness isn't always considered as a need for a service animal. Well, they've shown that many of our Men and Women coming home from the war that have PTSD are doing fine after receiving their Service Animal. I was diagnosed with PTSD many years before this was even an issue. I'm glad it's now being recognized.
I wanted to write this because my Littlest Angel Sugar was called home to our Lord on November 20th, 2012. She was the only thing that saved my life and without her I'm a broken person just taking one minute at a time. I wanted to honor her memory because she served so well and deserves so much more than she ever received. So please remember her with all the rest as one of the Greatest Service Dogs in The World. Thank You.
Rhonda, we are very sorry to hear about your loss and the physical and mental challenges you face. Many thanks for taking the time to write to honor the memory of Sugar and to let others know that service dogs come in all sizes and temperaments. We will be sure to highlight this when we display her photos in upcoming Monthly Dog Shows. Please feel free to write more about her or any other members of your Fur Family. Jo