Special Volunteers

Jared Wadley - News Magazine Editor

Jared_Wadley

Jared with Legend and Bella

Greetings from Michigan! I’m honored to be an editor of the Therapy Dogs Inc. News Magazine. I joined Therapy Dogs Inc. in 2010, nearly two years after seeing a group of therapy dogs bring smiles to students at the University of Michigan. (Go Blue!) As a long-time dog lover, I realized that pet therapy could be a fulfilling volunteer opportunity.

I’m the proud “parent” of two wonderful collies – Bella and Legend. We go to the U-M Mott Children’s Hospital and VA Hospital, as well as schools and libraries for the READ program. Visiting people in therapeutic and educational settings is exhilarating, especially knowing that I inspire them to have a greater appreciation for their own dogs. Sharing information about pet therapy and training makes me feel as if I’m a “dog whisperer.”

These teaching moments have extended to my family. I helped my oldest son Jordan work effectively with Bella and, at age 12, he became a registered Therapy Dogs Inc. junior handler in 2013. We visit the VA Hospital on weekends. What an amazing experience I share with him while thanking veterans for their years of service. In 2016, my youngest son Devin plans to become a junior handler at age 13. I look forward to that time when our home will have three registered therapy dog handlers.

The most recent chapter is serving as president of Therapaws of Michigan. I enjoy representing this local organization, which has more than 140 teams. I also celebrate my therapy experiences as a member of the Greater Brighton Collie Club and with regional collie rescue organizations.

Overall, I can’t imagine a volunteer program that’s more rewarding on many levels. I meet new people during every visit while walking Bella and Legend, who both relish the petting moments. Plus, as a former journalist, I’m among the first to read the uplifting stories for the News Magazine. I look forward to editing your submissions.