Humans of BluePath: Sheril Renee Hance, Puppy Raiser

How it All Began:

Before joining BluePath, I had experience raising several service dogs. I heard about BluePath and learned about the valuable service it provides to children and families in need of service dogs. I decided to raise puppies to contribute to this important cause.

Favorite Part of Puppy Raising:

The relationships I build with the dogs mean the world to me. I love developing trust with the puppies and watching them grow during their journeys. Besides getting to spend time with cute puppies, raising these dogs makes me happy to know that they will go on to help families in need.

Favorite Memory with BluePath:

Renee and BluePath Banjo

I have so many fond memories with BluePath that it is hard to choose just one. One of my favorite memories is when I picked up Banjo. A friend of mine accompanied me to pick up her own puppy, so I got to have two adorable puppies on my lap while my friend drove us home. Another fond memory I have is when I was walking with Banjo through a school one day. A professor noticed Banjo walking past the classroom and stopped class to introduce him to the students.

Words of Wisdom for Prospective Puppy Raisers:

There is no reason to be afraid of becoming a puppy raiser. When I raised my first dog, I was worried that I would mess up. I quickly learned that it is an intuitive process as dogs feed off your emotions and respond to positive encouragement. I also learned that BluePath provides a wonderful support system for volunteers. They will address questions and concerns and offer suggestions. BluePath will always give you positive feedback and never assign blame.

What Volunteering with BluePath Means to Her:

I feel that I have found the place where I am meant to be. BluePath is a great organization to work with as they trust their volunteers and give them guidelines without micromanaging. I know that by raising puppies for this group that serves the community, I am helping ease families’ worries about the safety and well-being of their relatives with autism.

Fast Facts:

About Renee:

Where She Lives: Chesapeake Beach, Maryland

Dream Vacation Spot: My happy place is a house by the water and a lot of dogs living with me.

Favorite Hobbies: Gardening, landscaping, and tending to bee houses and bird feeders in my backyard. Also painting, drawing, crafting, cross-stitching, and practicing agility exercises with dogs.

Favorite Food: Plant-based foods and dishes from a variety of cultures.

Favorite Time of Year: Summertime. I love long days, warm weather, and being outside.

About Banjo:

Favorite Toy: His cactus tuffy toy. He also loves playing with my cat and the people in his life.

Newest Skill: Learning to retrieve items and give them back.

Favorite Sleeping Spot: On top of people on the couch or under a desk.

Silly Traits: He makes hog noises when he is sniffing around. Sometimes his jowls get stuck on his teeth.

Fun Facts: He likes to play inside empty food bags. He gets along well with chickens and likes to stare at squirrels. He makes a lot of eye contact with me.

Three Words That Describe Banjo: Intuitive. Empathetic. Goofy.

BluePath Banjo

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