Sign In

Brutus The Therapy Dog

July 20, 2020

A loyal friend to everyone he meets, the labradoodle Brutus doesn’t act like his namesake.

Five-year-old Brutus is a certified therapy dog. He went through the eight-week “Canine Good Citizen” training class, hosted by National Capital Therapy Dogs, to earn his certification.

For the past two years, Brutus has offered warm, fuzzy comfort at Bayhealth hospital campuses in Dover and Milford.

In June, Bayhealth honored him with a Spirit of Planetree Award, which recognizes caregivers, physicians and pet therapy animals who go above and beyond.

“Brutus and his owner, Sharon Conley, are a team in a true sense of the word. They mentor new pet therapy groups, cheer on veteran teams and ensure all they meet have a better day,” wrote Brutus’s nominator, Bayhealth volunteer manager Carrie Hart. “When the child care center requested pet therapy teams visit during the ‘Week of the Young Child,’ Sharon and Brutus were there spreading love and snuggles to more than 90 students.”

“Week of the Young Child” is sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children and celebrates early learning. Conley, of Bowers Beach, said visiting the hospital daycare that week was a highlight for her and Brutus.

“They just really enjoyed snuggling up and petting and having fun with him,” she said.

Conley works in the volunteer office at Bayhealth, where the pet therapy program is managed.

“I see all the dogs and I thought ‘One of these days, that’s what I’m gonna do,’” she said. “It’s pretty exciting and rewarding.”

When asked how he felt about his award, Brutus said, “Woof. Woof woof.”

Register Your Dog

  • Most Recent News

    Former Victoria man’s diabetic alert dog helps him get back to life

    When Luke Hengen’s diabetes worsened in his early twenties, it stripped him of the outdoor activities where the country kid felt at home. Countless wilderness adventures and years of hard-fought football games took a toll on his body, to the point where he could no longer sense when his blood sugar was too high or […]

    Read more

    Students Get Therapy Dog

    When middle school students return to class on Jan. 11, they’ll find a new face at the door: Daisy. Daisy is a therapy dog and the personal pet of Rob Kreger, principal of the Rock L. Butler Middle School. The five-year-old golden retriever is not a school pet or mascot, but rather a working dog […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dogtor

    Last March, Caroline Benzel, a third-year medical student, began to notice the stress and discomfort her nurse friends were feeling from the pressures of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. “[Personal protective equipment] can be really rough on the skin,” Benzel, 31, tells PEOPLE. Benzel and her 3-year-old Rottweiler, Loki (who’s also a therapy dog) hatched a […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dog Pups

    When Stanley the miniature fox terrier’s owner passed away, the little dog started a ‘paw-some’ new role – bringing puppy love to some of the Gold Coast’s oldest residents. After Carinity Cedarbrook Diversional Therapist Julianne Staff adopted Stanley, he began visiting the aged care community at Mudgeeraba as a therapy dog. Therapy dogs help to […]

    Read more

    Puppy Cams

    A nonprofit is providing an unusual form of therapy for those on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic – puppy cams! “You spend five minutes with a puppy and try not to smile,” said registered nurse Robin Lingg Lagrone. Lingg Lagrone says watching little furballs wag their tails and prance on their paws helps […]

    Read more

    Pet Committee

    When Moore County’s school doors were abruptly closed earlier in 2020, two- and four-legged volunteers from the Moore County Citizens’ Pet Responsibility Committee (PRC) were in their 12th year of presenting a six-session Pet Responsibility Education Program for fourth-graders. The PRC quickly shifted gears and placed its program materials online as part of a home […]

    Read more