The Sterling Award For Outstanding Achievement In Therapy

This award was created in 2012 and first awarded to and named in honor of Sterling,
CH Devine Intervention In Hollywood THD CGC, ROM (Bronze)
Sire: CH Shann’s Goodtime In Hollywood CGC, ROM (Platinum)
Dam: CH Devine’s Baby Got Back
Owned by FBDCA members Jack and Darlene Abbott, Mary C. Devine, Derek Kowata & Allen Weinberg
Bred by Mary C. Devine, Derek Kowata, and Allen Weinberg

In 2011, the AKC first approved the new Therapy Dog (THD) title. Sterling was one of the first dogs to receive such a title and had completed all of the requirements for the title well before the title came into existence. Between 2010 and early 2012, Sterling along with his owner Darlene Abbott had already been a certified TDI (Therapy Dogs International) dog who had made more than 50 Hospice visits to assist in end-of-life care for adult and pediatric patients with life-limited illnesses. Additionally, Sterling was certified as a BARK Dog – Beach Animals Reading with Kids. Sterling remains involved in a reading program at an Elementary School. BARK is a volunteer program that encourages children to increase their reading skills and self-confidence by reading aloud to certified therapy dogs. Students find it intimidating to read in front of classmates, but love to read to the non-judgmental, calming dogs. Sterling had completed hundreds of hours and more than 50 sessions as a BARK Dog as of Spring, 2012. In addition to the above activities Sterling has attended numerous pet fairs, book fairs, open houses, and other events where a dog certified for therapy and/or reading was welcome. Several times he has participated in organized programs where college students, stressed out by finals, could drop by and get a hug and a cuddle from Sterling and other certified pet therapy dogs. One such even in 2010 drew almost 300 students in need of a hug.

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About the Lifetime Achievement Awards for Dogs:

Purpose: Lifetime Achievement Awards are intended to honor FBDCA member-owned dogs who have achieved significant distinction in an AKC recognized activity other than conformation. A dog many only earn one of these awards once, and the award is given for extraordinary lifetime achievement.

Application & Award: The Lifetime Achievement Awards will not necessarily be given yearly. Members who believe there is a dog worthy of such an award may nominate their own dog or any dog owned by another member in writing no late than the deadline set yearly by the Honors & Awards Committee of any calendar year for award at that year’s FBDCA Awards Banquet. Awards will only be given upon a recommendation of a majority of the Honors & Awards Committee with approval by the FBDCA Board. The deadline to nominate any dog for a lifetime achievement award for 2014 is July 31, 2014. Please submit your nomination to the FBDCA Honors & Awards Committee Chair, Allen Weinberg, at a.g.weinberg[at]gmail[dot]com before the deadline.

Note: Starting after the 2014 FBDCA National Specialty Awards Banquet, the AKC Therapy Dog Advanced (ThDA) title will be a requirement for the Sterling Award.