“It is amazing how much love and laughter they bring into our lives and even how much closer we become with each other because of them.” – John Grogan, American Journalist.
Covenant Woods has recently created a new role among our Leadership team. This position couldn’t be filled by just anyone, it had to be the perfect candidate. The qualifications included, but were not limited to, working well with others, excellent customer service, comforting and kind demeanor, and being soft to the touch. After an extensive search, we found a one in a million candidate, Jett Black!
Jett is an 8-month-old Aussie Doodle (Australian Shepherd and Standard Poodle mix) who came to us from the non-profit organization K-9 Caring Angels, where he graduated with a certification in Pet Therapy. Jett began at Covenant Woods in January of 2022 and has already significantly impacted the community.
In an interview with Tara Beatty, Life Enrichment Manager at Covenant Woods, she explained how Jett has interacted with the residents so far; she says, “Jett is doing a great job with therapy visits in the care center. He seems to know who needs him. Some residents only get a quick hello, whereas other residents may get a longer visit. One particular resident has had failing health, and he always sits at her feet. She loves his company.”
There’s strong evidence that a dog’s company has many beneficial impacts on one’s health. The presence of a dog in a senior living community can reduce negative emotions and increase one’s sense of purpose and unconditional love. Something as simple as petting a dog can reduce stress, stabilize one’s heart rate, and even lower blood pressure.
While Jett works in the community, he lives here as well. “Jett starts his day with breakfast at 7:30 AM and then he goes for a morning walk,” says Tara. “He helps me get the mail from the Concierge desk and enjoys saying hello to everyone on the way back.” Tara then explains how he roams free in the Memory Support neighborhood. “Some days you will find him in the Nurse’s station, but if the residents are doing an activity at the table, he is always close by. When they play a mobility game with balloons or balls, he excitedly wants to participate.”
When asked how Jett has settled in to his new home, Tara said he has been doing exceptionally well. “He seems to have adapted quickly. He has the staff at Covenant Woods wrapped around his little paw! They spoil him. He has been a huge stress reliever for the staff, and that has probably been my biggest surprise. My main goal with a facility pet was for the residents, however, I think he has been a huge benefit for the employee population as well.”
In his short time here this far, Jett has already made a significant impact on the community. Jett joining the Covenant Woods team has allowed us to further excel in our value of Wholeness of Life. While this value doesn’t explicitly list anything about having a dog, you will find it saying something about helping everyone to experience the greatest level of their emotional, mental, physical, spiritual, and vocational ability. And Jett certainly does help to increase those levels.