VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The BC & Alberta Guide Dogs Association has named two of its new puppies in honor of Dr. Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Administrator.
The adorable new hires are named Bonnie and Henry in honor of the best doctor’s efforts amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
“As we sat there watching the birth of these puppies, we realized we were in such a different time with COVID. We both had masks on, we both looked at each other and was like, ‘Wow, we have to name two puppies to honor how Bonnie Henry helped us through this crisis,’ Linda Thornton, the director of breeding and puppy breeding, remembers.
Meet “Bonnie” and “Henry”. They are soon to be guide dogs from British Columbia and Alberta named after the best doctor in British Columbia. “…. It is an honor to have two such adorable namesakes. Taking a moment to appreciate the joy of two little puppies is so welcome,” says DBH. pic.twitter.com/NWoyDCFjOd
– Sonia Aslam (@SoniaSAslam) September 30, 2020
She says she and her colleagues listen to Henry’s updates whenever they’re on, and that the OPS has been able to keep everyone “calm and steady.”
Bonnie and Henry are now just over four weeks old. They will stay with their mother until they are seven to eight weeks old, after which they will be sent on their way to begin training.
“Bonnie is actually going to go to a puppy breeder here in Vancouver and we’re going to put her in a sponsorship program so people can follow her growth,” says Thornton. “Henry is going to the island, and we think it’s a suitable place since Bonnie Henry lives there.
“So hopefully we can have a face-to-face meeting with him,” Thornton adds.
Puppies will stay with their “puppy breeders” until they are at least 14 months old before starting what is described as advanced training to become a working dog.
Guess what? It’s time for the birth announcement! ???? Nothing like a healthy and happy litter of 10 puppies to bring joy to your day. Lovely Penny (and Felix) had 8 boys and 2 girls last week – all is well. ????
Posted by BC & Alberta Guide Dogs on Wednesday, September 9, 2020
Dogs that successfully complete advanced training can continue to fill three types of roles. Thornton says dogs can be trained to help the visually impaired, young children with profound autism, or even become an operational stress injury / PTSD service dog for RCMP and military veterans. army, or even first responders.
Besides being useful, dogs are also very cute. Thornton hopes the puppies can help spread some “pawsitivity”.
“We just want to honor her with Bonnie and Henry because I think she did an amazing job. And, you know, there’s been a bad press on all the shitty things that are happening to her right now, so it would be nice to have something positive.
The puppies have already caught Henry’s attention.
“It’s an honor to have two such adorable namesakes,” says Henry. “I want to extend my warmest wishes for the continued success of your organization during what has been a difficult time for all of us. Taking a moment to appreciate the joy of two little puppies is therefore welcome.
-With files from Jon Szekeres