Therapy dog Gabe Mitchell is P.M. Kiwanis program

President Kenny Lamb opened the P.M. Kiwanis at 7 p.m. Wednesday evening in the Hy-Vee dinning room with the Pledge of Allegiance and a moment of silence. Martha Edgeton introduced her guest, granddaughter Laura Humrichouse, of Onawa.

Featured guest speaker, Gabe Mitchell, was introduced by Ann Kent. His guardian, Mary Drake, and owner Marty Mitchell were also introduced to speak in his behalf. Gabe was born in Florida in January of 2013 and at the age of seven weeks he was sent for specific training as a therapy dog. Learning hand commands as well as verbal. On completion of his 10-month training Mary picked him up but, before picking him up she sent a baby blanket and some toys that she had handled to the trainer so Gabe would be familiar with her scent. Marty explained that he has brought a comforting presence to the Funeral home. He has become the official greeter and successfully trained the mailman and UPS man to bring him treats. Gabe is a Golden Doodle, that is a mix of a standard Poodle and a English Cream Golden Retriever. He has been specifically bred so he is hypo-allergenic. Mitchell Family Funeral Home spent about 18 months choosing a breed and studying the use of therapy dogs in this setting. Gabe seems to understand stressful situations and brings a diversion to those involved. He loves children as well as adults and provides a non-judgmental listener to all.

The meeting continued with the announcement of the completed purchase of the lawnmower. Edgeton presented the opportunity to apply for a grant from the Theisen Foundation for funds to bring improvements to the West End/Tankersly Park.

Featured speaker next week will be Joanne Nevens “What’s on Your Calendar” is her subject. Feel free to join us at 7 p.m.