Troupe Member of the Month - Mary Lou Krippner, Duncan and Coyote
Mary Lou has been a dedicated member of the PAWSitive Therapy Troupe since 2012. She has two registered therapy dogs. Duncan is an 8-year-old male bi-blue Sheltie who has been working with Mary Lou ever since he was a year old. She added Coyote, an 11-year-old male bi-black Sheltie last year. Mary Lou and her therapy dogs enjoy working with struggling young readers at the “Read With Me” visits at Scheisher Elementary School in Lisle. They are regular visitors at Gottlieb Medical Center on the Rehabilitation unit. They are also regulars at Villa St Benedict, a senior living campus located in Lisle. However, the visits at Hines Veterans Administration Hospital are very closest to Mary Lou's heart. She says that "it is all about giving back" to our veterans.
Mary Lou and Duncan have appeared in the PAWSitive Therapy Troupe’s “Canine Nutcracker” in 2012 and 2015. Duncan has starred as a Mouse, Chinese Tea duet dancer and an Acrobatic Tumbler. Coyote is looking forward to making his debut in the 2018 Nutcracker alongside his experienced brother Duncan!
Here is what Mary Lou has to say about her Shelties and PAWSItive Therapy Troupe experiences:
"My first encounter with therapy dog visits was many years ago when my sister was in a series of nursing homes. I would informally bring my rescue Sheltie Charlie to visit her. I saw how much it brightened her day and the other residents too. After I lost Charlie and then my sister, I knew I wanted to continue doing that.
When Duncan arrived, I immediately knew that he had the right temperament to make that possible. Duncan is a calm and sensitive Sheltie who gravitates toward the people who need his gentle touch the most. On the other hand, it surprises me how much he enjoys getting pets from lots of people such as the students at Wheaton College and our Troupe's "exam de-stress" visits at local high schools. Each new person he meets is another opportunity to spread his love.
Coyote is currently enjoying quiet visits that allow him to spend individual time with students at "Read With Me" visits at local elementary schools and rehab patients at Gottlieb Medical Center. At home, he's an active and barky boy but on visits, he's relaxed and sweet.
Sharing my dogs with people and spreading the word about how a therapy dog can help so many people is what keeps me doing this work."
On behalf of all of us in the PAWSitive Therapy Troupe, thank YOU Mary Lou for so many years of devoted service!