What I’ve learned from Ohlin – One of the Penn Vet Working Dogs

Author: Jean Findlay

It has been just about a year since Ohlin has arrived at Penn and into my life. I am the Foster for the chocolate labrador named Ohlin, the 8th puppy to join the Penn Vet Working Dog Center. He arrived on Halloween Day 2012. He is now a constant companion and rides to work with me every day and attends school at one of the finest working dog programs in the country located at Penn on the Gray’s Ferry Campus.

Ohlin1

Ohlin2

If Ohlin could speak these are the things that I think he would be reminding all of us to do:

  1. Stretch when you wake up
  2. Wag more – bark less
  3. Be loyal
  4. Live simply
  5. Take naps
  6. Don’t feel guilty about eating a treat
  7. Make new friends
  8. When loved ones come home run to the door to greet them
  9. Long walks are good for you
  10. When someone is having a bad day just sit next them – no words necessary

There are 16 puppies that are in training to be detection dogs. This week you may have seen in the news that the center celebrated its one-year anniversary with a special program and graduated the first puppy, K9-Socks, who will join Penn’s Division of Public Safety as their first explosive and tracking dog. These puppies are all named after 9/11 rescue dogs. There were more than 300 search and rescue dogs that helped in the rescue effort at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. This video tells their story. Ohlin’s namesake was deployed to the World Trade Center.  Here is a photo of the original Ohlin at work.

firedog

In the past year, Ohlin has grown from a little ball of fur into 58 pound sleek, athletic, energetic, and let me repeat energetic dog. He is a handsome boy who is always happy – his tail wags all of the time. He would never be able to work with explosives!

outsidesleepingpup

In Ohlin’s first weeks with me he went into the election polls to vote on November 6, rode in a shopping cart, visited the Penn Student Calling Center, attended the Penn-Harvard football game and helped me to meet neighbors who wanted to say hello to the cute little chocolate lab at the end of the leash!

cart

Ohlin is currently part of the cancer team of three dogs, which also includes, McBaine (sponsored by St. Germain Catering) and Tsunami. This collaborative project, launched by Penn and the Monell Chemical Senses Center, with an $80,000 grant from the Kaleidoscope of Hope Ovarian Cancer Foundation, involves experts in such disparate fields as veterinary science, oncology, physics, organic chemistry, and nanotechnology. Follow this link to the article that appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

thankyou

If you are interested in learning more about the Penn Vet Working Dog Program please reach out to them or me. There are many ways to get involved as a volunteer and spend time with these little super-heroes in training. I plan on trying to get a superman costume on Ohlin for Halloween this year. We’ll see how that goes.

grownup

Visit http://pennvetwdc.org/ and sign-up to receive their eNewsletter.

Other links of note are:
https://www.facebook.com/PVWorkingDogCenter
https://twitter.com/@PennVetWDC

Advertisements

1 Comment

Filed under Jean F., Penn Vet, Penn Working Dog Center, The Penn Fund

One response to “What I’ve learned from Ohlin – One of the Penn Vet Working Dogs

  1. Dee

    Thank you for fostering Ohlin for this important work. He is a wonderful dog.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s