Pitbull Destined for Death Brings Peace to Sandy Hook Student
Jeffrey, the “Positively Peaceful Pit Bull,” was just hours from euthanasia three years ago when he was rescued by a a hospice worker in Milford, CT, Michele Houston. She saw his potential almost immediately and took him to be trained for his therapy certification.
“He passed with flying colors,” she recalled. “The examiner, he said if you don’t make this dog a therapy dog it would be a shame.”
Today his Facebook page is hitting 2000 fans and he has a calendar full of therapy visits to schools, hospitals and assisted-living facilities but he always has time for Emma.
Emma is Emma Wishneski, a soon-to-be 4th grader at Sandy Hook Elementary. Jeffrey and Emma first met in December at a Christmas party, just weeks after the tragic shooting that claimed the lives of 26 students and faculty. The bond between the two was almost immediate.
“It was still a really vulnerable time for her, and she just was comfortable sitting next to Jeffrey,” says Emma’s mother, Marykay Wishneski. “He’s strong and I think she just feels safe.”
Since then Emma and Jeffrey have spent time together, play dates, which have had a great impact on the 9-year-old.
“I think for her, there’s a security in that it’s a dog and not another person,” Wishneski said. “Emma becomes free and runs and plays and smiles. It’s a very tender thing between the two of them.”
And when Emma returns to school Tuesday, she’ll be bringing a special friend with her, a miniature stuffed animal version of Jeffrey to help remind her of that feeling of safety and the loving bond she shares with a 73-pound pitbull…
Jeffrey, the “Positively Peaceful Pit Bull,” is not only a hero, a therapy dog, he is a wonderful ambassador for the breed… 🙂
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