Hero Dog Awards - Raina

Raina

Perkasie, Pennsylvania

Raina was born blind & deaf, but not mute. I drove to NC & I adopted Raina at 6 months old. Raina can’t see or hear. But Raina likes to be seen & heard. She’s a fluffy girl who always has a smile on her face. She loves treats, stuffies, & naps. I trained Raina using touch commands. Raina & I volunteered for Blind Dog Rescue Alliance. Raina & I attended numerous dog rescue events. Together, we raised much needed funds & educated the public on dogs with special needs. Raina also helped me foster other special needs dogs. Raina is brave & fearless. She’s visited the beach & swam in the ocean. Raina has hiked mountains & explored New York City. Raina modeled & has acted with me on TV. Everywhere Raina goes she shows people that disability means possibility. As a middle school music teacher, I created the Lending a Paw program which combines music education with community service. My music students performed in fundraising concerts for our local shelter. Then I started to get sick. I was in & out of the hospital. I was eventually put on months of bed rest & a medical leave of absence from teaching music. I don’t know what I would have done without Raina by my side. Raina continued to give my life purpose. Raina reminded me that disability means possibility. Because of Raina dogs with special needs were given a second chance. Because of Raina children learned the the value in giving back to their community. Because of Raina I am a better dog mom, a better teacher, & a better person