SAN ANTONIO –A San Antonio man wants to help a survivor of the Uvalde school shooting by providing the victim with a service dog.
If things go according to plan, Eric Andrade will send the dog, Stinky, to help a family in Uvalde recover from the tragedy.
Andrade is a professional dog handler at 3DK9 detection services in San Antonio. He encouraged Stinky and helped find a home for him.
“He was originally a dog that someone said was too aggressive to keep in his apartment,” Andrade said. “They (said they) couldn’t keep him in a cage because he was escaping. We went ahead and assessed the dog to see if he would bite.
According to Andrade, Stinky was determined to be non-aggressive, lacked a toy drive, and was mildly food-motivated.
“He would find his food, but he wouldn’t eat it,” Andrade said. “He mainly wanted praise (and) wanted to be with someone. So we thought he would be a very good companion dog. We offered the dog for free on Nextdoor and Facebook, along with three basic obedience classes, and no one wanted the dog.
Andrade did not give up. He called an assistance dog trainer from the Bandera-based nonprofit A Doggie 4 You.
“He came down, he assessed the dog and he said, ‘He’s a perfect dog for a family in Uvalde.’ So from now on, Stinky is a candidate for service work,” Andrade said.
It will be in the next few weeks that Stinky will begin training as a service animal with the goal of being assigned to a family in Uvalde affected by the school shooting.
“A dog as needy as him will be perfect for a family that needs that attention. There’s a lot of science to this, but it’s because of his willingness to praise rather than food or toys,” a Andrade said.
Until the nonprofit has a kennel space, Stinky’s goal will be to make sure he is neutered and can socialize properly.
“From there, he will go through a much more rigorous obedience course. He should be certified under Canine Good Citizen and Community Good Citizen certifications,” Andrade said. “He is a perfect dog for a family that going through (a tough time), but who needs that attention, who needs that comfort, who needs a real teddy bear, so to speak.”
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