We already heard of therapy dogs. We already read stories about these dogs giving joy to the people in distress. Therapy dogs can be seen in hospitals, hospices, airports, and schools.
But, did you know that therapy dogs can also be at funeral homes?
Sam Oakey, the assistant manager of Oakey’s Funeral Service in Roanoke, Virginia, has thought of hiring a grief therapy dog to give solace to the grieving family. Oakey’s Funeral Service has been in the business of providing care to the deceased individuals since 1866.
The grief therapy dog’s name is Ragnar Oakey, a Golden Labrador retriever. Ragnar has a pleasant personality, as if he is smiling all the time. He is also a sweet and loving dog. Sam saw the perfect characteristics of a grief therapy dog on from Ragnar.
Ragnar’s presence during viewing has made a significant impact on helping the family cope with the loss of a loved one. He will rest his head on someone’s lap and sit or lay beside you. Ragnar is offering himself as a silent listener to one’s grief and pain.
When Ragnar was first introduced as a grief therapy dog at Oakey’s Funeral Service, some people were a bit surprised by his presence during viewing. Eventually, the people during viewing realized that his presence has a soothing effect on the grieving family.
People at the wake would stroke Ragnar, or even talk to him while they pour out their sadness. They appreciated Ragnar’s presence at the viewing as he helped in easing out their pain.
Ragnar finished his obedience training recently. He also earned his Canine Good Citizen certificate. The Canine Good Citizen certificate is Ragnar’s first step in becoming a Certified Grief Therapy Dog.
People who are using Oakey’s Funeral Services may request for Ragnar’s presence during the viewing for free.
Ragnar has been a blessing to Oakey’s Funeral Services and its clients.
Ragnar is always there for you, in your low times.
Photos courtesy of Oakey’s Funeral Service and Crematory via Facebook