Adar the Afghan is Dog of the Day
If you’ve seen our adorable A-Z dog breed video
you may have noticed some amazing photos of a gorgeous Afghan kicking off our “A” breeds. Well, that dog is Adar and he’s a therapy dog and an inspiration.
Meet Adar, the 7-year-old therapy Afghan, and our dog of the day
“I always wanted an afghan hound. After struggling with some illness I decided that I would search for one. I contacted an afghan rescue organization and they suggested training a puppy instead of an older dog with possible rescue issues. Adar came into my life from a loving family & was the only male in a litter of 8 females at just 10 weeks old.”
Adar’s mom Terre adopted him at a time in her life when she was struggling with health issues and going through physical therapy to regain her strength. Recently divorced and with 3 lovely and helpful kids at home, Terre was looking for a service dog to take some pressure off of her kids and help her regain her independence.
“Adar and I are like one person now. Over the years we have grown very close. We can anticipate and read each other’s minds… As long as we are together- be it at a dog park, playing catch, taking walks, going to the beach or just cuddling watching T.V. – we are happy.”
When Terra adopted Adar, she had 3 rescue cats, her 3 kids and 2 poodles in her home. She told us how right from day one Adar loved playing & sleeping with the poodles and cats. Her kids also really enjoyed playing with Adar and helped to socialize him.
“He was a rascal and got into all kinds of mischief growing up. From 5 months old to a year I took Adar from puppy to adult training classes. He graduated his “CGC” Canine Good Citizen Program and Service Dog Program at a year old. Adar gets along well with all different kinds of animals and people.”
About the Afghan Breed
Terre explained that Afghan Hounds go through many physical changes over the first few years of their lives. As they grow, their legs get very long and they have a lanky clumsy gait. Their fur also changes to hair and they shed their coat which requires daily brushing. Even their face goes through many different looks as their snout/nose extends, they develop what Terre called monkey whiskers, and grow funny little strands from their chin. A main concern as they grow is their curly tail which is very fragile as a pup until they mature when it becomes stronger and thicker.
Terre explained that any breed can be a therapy dog but the dog should be 1yr old to begin training. Not all dogs’ personalities are suited for the work as it depends on many factors. They should be very sociable and calm. You can read our article about what makes a good therapy dog here
About training Adar to be a therapy dog
“At that time, I felt so much more independent with Adar at my side. My career was as a clinical & forensic scientist and I missed working in a hospital helping others. With my 2 lovely daughters off to college and only my sweet son at home, I decided to take a Therapy Dog Team training class to see if Adar had the right temperament to be a therapy dog.”
Terre explained that the training was extensive, covering everything from desensitising him to noises, working well with other dogs he meets for the first time that could be working the same day, and being touched by people of all ages.
“Adar and I loved working together and enjoyed the smiles he brought to all. Touching people’s lives during their time of crisis with a warm paw and soft fur can make all the difference. It’s very rewarding work and we have a special bond but it does requires breaks every 30 to 45 mins. Being touched so often by strangers can be very exhausting to a dog.”
Adar and Terre have volunteered at a children’s oncology clinic, retirement homes, and a children’s brain injury centre for a few years.
“Working as a therapy dog team is a very rewarding and bonding experience that brings you so much closer together with your dog. Adar has enriched my life in so many ways. In our lifetime we have many pets, but there are always a few special ones Adar is one of those who leaves a lasting glow of happiness to all who meets him.”
Adar the superstar
At a dog park event Adar was discovered by a photographer and asked to model which has lead to Adar now also working as an actor and a model. Terre told us they have a lot of fun on set where he shines.The photos we have seen are just stunning.
Were you inspired by Adar’s story? Do you have a dog you think could be a therapy dog or that we should feature as one of our dogs of the day? Tell us in the comments!