The Dog Blog

  1. Barkley: Therapy Dog, Best Friend and Cancer Survivor

    Courtesy of Barkley’s mom, Kathleen, and written in April of 2018: Barkley is a 5 year old lab/hound mix that we adopted almost three years ago from the SPCA in Richmond. Barkley quickly became a beloved member of our family. I am a nurse working at Tucker Pavilion at CJW Medical Center. Tucker Pavilion is […]

  2. Give Love; Get Love

    The following story is courtesy of Jonathan K., a former Pen Pals handler: Jonathan entered into the prison system at 18 years old. He came from a broken, drug-infested and criminal home life early on. Jonathan never knew who his father was, and his mother was a heroin addict, prostitute and criminal for years before […]

  3. Home Sweet Home for Silverbelle

    Recent Pen Pals graduate, Silverbelle, is loving her new forever home and her mom, Daici, couldn’t be happier with her new four-legged bestie! Check out this sweet update from Daici below: I just wanted to thank everyone for helping me to find Silverbelle. She is absolutely the perfect fit for me and  I couldn’t be […]

  4. Achilles: A Companion Through the Darkness

    Our animal companions impact us in profound ways. Whether it’s because of the company they provide, their endearing personalities, their unconditional love or all of the above, our pets mean the world to us, just as we mean the world to them. Companions in Crisis For Ashley Shoemaker, her animal companion came into her life […]

  5. Getting​ ​in​ ​Front​ ​of​ ​It​ ​with​ ​Quen:​ ​How​ ​One​ ​Dog​ ​Changed​ ​Me​ ​for​ ​the​ ​Best

    Excerpts from an essay by former Pen Pals coordinator, Sarah Hornberger:   After 10 years of working and volunteering with shelter pets, many cats, dogs, and even snakes have significantly affected my life and contributed to who I have become as an animal advocate. I have worked to bottle-feed orphaned kittens, socialize hoarded dogs, and ensure […]