For the last couple of weeks, Kerith the golden retriever might have been the only thing boosting firefighters’ moods while battling the northern California fires. Thankfully, even without rest and backup, their four-legged friend keeps them afloat.
Kerith The Golden Retriever
In case you don’t know, there are terrifying wildfires ripping through northern California right now. And, as the North Bay fires continue spreading, the firefighters refuse to give up on their mission. Through the ashes and dust, they are somehow battling the heat with excitement. What could possibly make them excited? Well, it’s not easy, but their puppy friend, a golden retriever Kerith, certainly helps! This two-year-old dog with long silky hair comes to greet them after long shifts and provide a few necessary smiles.
“During the Woodward wildfire in Marin County, Kerith is boosting morale during the crew’s morning briefing,” Heidi Carmen, Kerith’s caretaker, said. “She brings levity and a sense of playfulness even though they know the task of the day will be challenging.” Of course, Kerith is a certified crisis response therapy dog. And she comes to the firefighter’s basecamp daily with one only task: to love and receive love! Now, she’s also becoming an Instagram star thanks to her page of adorable pictures.
Finding Her Way In Life
Interestingly, at first, Kerith’s mission in life started very differently. Initially, she was supposed to be a guide dog for the blind in San Rafael, California. However, her trainers saw potential in the cute golden retriever. The puppy was just too adorable, energetic, and very affectionate to be a guide dog, so she needed another occupation. Carmen then adopted Kerith into her home and started training her to become a therapy animal!
Eventually, Kerith became a certified comfort dog thanks to the Pet Partners therapy dog organization. Lately, the pupper was asked to visit the firefighters in their station due to the high demand – and they fell in love with her lively nature. “Kerith is a very special dog with endless love and affection to share with all who meet her,” Carmen said. “Her favorite people are firefighters.”
Words Of Wisdom
Carmen says that Kerith is unlike any therapy fluffy she’s ever encountered before. “She makes people feel loved, special and important. One firefighter told me ‘Kerith has the uncanny ability to make me feel like I am the most important person in the world.’”
During the meeting, the firefighters pose for pictures with the dog, grins on their faces, and happiness in the eyes. “There are wildfires to the west, north, south and east of us,” a post on Kerith’s Instagram said, talking wise words for everyone affected. “Too many fires, not enough resources to battle them so they are growing. We are doing the best we can to lift morale at base camp. Hang in there my friends.” Apart from taking pictures and daily visits, the fire crew also get photos of Kerith to look at when the dog is not around. “Kerith helps them feel less overwhelmed, exhausted and emotionally depleted,” Carmen said.