Member of the month – August 21

Name: Christina and Gerard
Area: Coventry and Warwickshire.
Dogs: Lulu (02/09/2007 – 11/05/2020), Milo and Pepper

We are a sister and brother team based in Coventry and have been involved with therapy dogs for over 8 years, initially with Lulu the greyhound, and then Milo the shihtzu and now with new greyhound, Peggy.

Milo is a very cuddly and lovable dog. Being a small dog, we can lift him up to the elderly in the care homes and when he attended Crufts with us, he posed in the letters. Lulu was a firm favourite with everyone: the children loved her and even Ciara from the Kennel Club had a big fuss with her when we attended Crufts just before lockdown in 2020.

After Lulu sadly passed away, we adopted another greyhound: Peggy, a Hall Green greyhound, who hung up her running shoes and found a forever home with us this January. After Peggy was with us for 6 months, we felt she was settled and comfortable with us, so we put her forward for her Canine Concern assessment. Peggy passed with flying colours and now has a second career visiting schools and healthcare establishments with her two buddies, Milo and Dexter (another Canine Concern member from Coventry). The children love to stroke Peggy’s super soft coat and she is now affectionally known as ‘Peggy the Tiger’ by all the children.

Christina has been a therapy dog assessor for many years and has been the local area coordinator for Canine Concern since joining the charity several years ago. Gerard mainly concentrates on coordinating and organising the many visits to local schools, hospitals and libraries and ensuring all the paperwork is up to date. We work well as a team growing and supporting the Coventry and Warwickshire area part of Canine Concern.

We both visit many places alongside our own work running a dog boarding, day care and walking business. We have a very busy life, but manage to juggle work commitments around our visiting, assessing and coordinating roles for Canine Concern.

We are supported by a strong team of members and their dogs, which is growing every month with new members wishing to join after they have heard about our rewarding work.

Canine Concern Comments

Since Gerard and Christina joined us in 2019, they have been amazing support for the Coventry and Warwickshire area. As their reputation builds so do the new requests for visits from hospitals, schools and care homes, as well as hopeful new members who want to join the team once they have been successful in the assessment. Not only do Gerard and Christina support their human and dog teams when they start, but they continue throughout the year. They have managed to keep motivated during the recent crazy times and have a very busy schedule of Covid visits to their regular locations, where both Gerard and Christina as well as their lovely dogs, Milo and Peggy are loved. It was very sad when Lulu passed away and several places even donated to Canine Concern in her memory. It is a credit to both Gerard and Christina that their own dogs and their Coventry and Warwickshire team of dogs and owners are doing so well.