Antler is a 10 year old female pitbull who was followed by police into an abandoned building where she had been caring for her 5 puppies. TAF’s lead therapy dog is the ePITome of all things good, loyal and loving. For years Antler has been paired up with abused dogs coming out of the pound and off the streets of Chicago. Her tranquil nature helps to calm their minds, heal their souls and trust once again. Because she was once a mama, Antler is a very maternal dog. She is incredibly tolerant of pushy/ under socialized pups and excels at teaching proper manners and social etiquette. Antler is priceless and an absolute gift to all of the dogs in our care. She is simply one in a million!
Hazel Grace is an 8 year old female Dachshund/terrier mix. When TAF first took Hazel Grace in, she was in critical condition after had being set on fire. After months of months of medical care to repair her skin and treat for heartworm, Hazel Grace made a full recovery. Though she may be little, don’t let that fool you. This little girl can hold her own with any little or big out there! She is smart as a whip, a little diva and plays an integral part in encouraging good behavior during playdates. Teaching proper social skills is invaluable when preparing a homeless pup for adoption. Hazel Grace’s confidence makes her a great role model for all of the littles and we adore her.
Pint-sized Bentley is our gentlest therapy dog who never stops trying to earn the trust of the most forlorn and cautious homeless pups. Bentley has saved more homeless dogs lives than any of our therapy dogs combined. If a shelter has a little dog that they believe to be “unadoptable” due to temperament, Bentley is often brought in. Bentley’s submissive temperament and eagerness to make a new friend has won over some of the most emotionally traumatized dogs coming from the pound. Once a rescue sees that an “unadoptable” dog has made friends with Bentley, it is a safe bet that the pup would follow suit in a home with a similar dog. Thus... giving them a chance at a happily ever after.
Eeyore is our 2 year old gentle giant. Weighing in at 180lbs and a length of 6 feet, Eeyore is a chilled out Great Dane that the tiniest homeless dogs in our program gravitate to. His calm nature and size makes them feel safe and protected. These homeless littles usually like to curl up next to him or climb on him like a mountain goat. Eeyore is so tolerant and has the patience of a saint.
Fiona is a Newfoundland our newest therapy dog in training. At 11 months old, Fiona already weighs in at 145lbs. She is already giving our Eeyore a run for his money! TAF therapy dogs Antler and Hazel Grace have taken Fiona under their wing and have been guiding her to make the right choices. Due to her enormous size, Fiona’s training will take a bit longer. We have to make sure that she knows her boundaries and doesn’t squish any of the littles. Our initial goal for Fiona is to help temperament test the big dogs that come into our care and be their playmate. Stay tuned for more updates!
Retired Team Members
8 year old female pitbull who was found tied to a fence at 4 months old. Sophie is our "leader" of all our rehabilitation dogs. Gentle, firm and very tolerant, Sophie helps us decide if a dog's temperament is good and will quickly flee if she feels threatened or uneasy. She teaches dogs how to play and shows them what is appropriate (or not.)
7 year old male Aussie mix who was surrendered to a rural shelter when he was about one year old. Bondi is a very chilled out dog and not much of a player. Instead, this handsome fellow would rather let a new dog hang out with him and let them come up to him on their own terms. He is non-threatening and gives the dogs lots of room to get comfortable. We often pair Bondi with dogs who don’t really know how to co-exist in the presence of another dog.
4 year old male Doberman who was found wandering in a very dangerous, impoverished neighborhood by police. Miller has a very calm personality that dogs are drawn to and he is extremely passive and tolerant. Due to his size, our gentle giant makes many of the dogs feel safe as his tall stature can provide them shelter from new people or other dogs. This combined with Miller’s stoic nature helps a new dog to feel more comfortable and builds up their confidence. Miller is currently in training to be a therapy dog.
2 year old male Wolfhound mix who was surrendered as a baby to a local open access shelter. Rylan is very easy going and brings great comfort to new dogs coming straight out of the pound. He initiates play softly and gently, which helps the more scared or nervous dogs feel calmer in social situations. If they are not in the mood to play, our scruffy muppet will let them curl up close to him and just chill out. Rylan is currently in training to be a therapy dog.
3 year old Australian Shepherd who came to TAF from Nebraska and quickly found his place with TAF's Canine Rehabilitation Team as an energetic, easy going social dog. Quizz excels in teaching dogs in our program who want to play but don't know how what is appropriate. He is enrolled in training with the hopes of being a therapy dog.
3 year old Tripp is one of TAF’s most playful therapy dogs. He is our go to pup for the more energetic dogs that need a chilled out big dog to run around and wrestle with. Tripp has a special place in our heart as he sat with our departed therapy dog Miller and encouraged him to eat before he crossed over the Rainbow Bridge. There is such a serene quality about Tripp and the other dogs just love being around him.
8 year old Louie came to TAF from an open access shelter after his owner gave him up. He was badly injured with burns on his paw pads and backside. Once on the road to recovery, it was discovered that Louie had gastrointestinal disease and was unable to produce tears. Given his need for constant medical care, we have become as attached to Louie as he has become to us. Because of this, Louie has become the newest rookie to the team and is in training to one-day follow in the footsteps of the same pups that watched over him.
Surrendered to a local shelter at 12 weeks of age, Hippo was suffering from severe mange, terrible secondary skin infections, and was just all around miserable. After months of medicated baths, antibiotics and pain management, we soon realized Hippo had the qualities desired for her to join our Therapy Dog team.