Mojo, Mount Holly, NJ

My name is Mojo. I was just another stray dog on death row in New York City until my Toots saw my picture and fell in love with me. When I came to live with my Toots, I didn’t know nothing about how to be a good dog. I didn’t know what a collar was, and my tags scared me at first, and I even ate a door one time!! But now I’ve learned a bunch of great things, like walking on a leash, and how to sit and come and lay down when I’m told to, and best of all I’m learning how to help my Toots live a better life!

See, my Toots has Fibromyalgia, a chronic pain condition that often makes her weak and in pain all over her whole body. When I came to live with her, she had just been officially diagnosed and she was really sad because of it. Even though she had been sick for a long time, she had tried to keep it a secret and hide it from people, but by the time I came along she couldn’t hide it anymore. A lot of people didn’t know how to handle her illness and they treated her not-so-good, and then she started having a lot of trouble doing the things she loved, like dancing and being in a band. It was so sad to see her hurting so much…

But I knew I could help, I just had to prove it to her!! I learned how to tell when she was in pain, and when she’s hurting really bad I’ll bark at her until she goes and lies down to rest. But I knew I could be more help than that, so I barked and barked and barked, you know, to try and tell her I could help, but she didn’t understand. Then a really nice trainer suggested walking me with a backpack full of water bottles to help exercise me and tire me out and I finally had my chance! I showed my Toots how good and helpful I could be by carrying that backpack everywhere she’d let me and acting real excited whenever she asked if I wanted my backpack. I knew if I could just show her how strong and reliable I am she would figure it out – because my Toots is very smart, you see – and she DID figure it out!

Now I’m training as a Mobility Assistance Service Dog for my Toots. I’ve already learned how to stay still so she can brace against my back to get off the ground, and I carry things in my special backpack that has special patches on it, and I get to go places other dogs aren’t allowed to go, like grocery stores and the pharmacy. Even though, by law, I can be considered a service dog already, I’m still trying to learn new things to help my Toots. I’m learning how to pick things up and give them to her, and how to pull a wagon to help her go shopping. My Toots says I’m super special because not every dog gets to do these things, but I think I’m super special because I get to be with her.

One day soon I hope to have my Canine Good Citizen Certificate and I want to become a certified therapy dog so I can share all my pibble wiggles and smiles with other people. Oh yeah, and in case you didn’t know, “pibble” is another word for “pit bull”, which is what I am. My Toots tells me that some people are scared of pibbles, and I think that’s silly! I don’t understand how they can think they know so much about me from a word when none of them have ever sniffed my butt or played with me. But it’s ok, me and Toots are gonna show them all. We’re gonna lead by example.

To follow me on my adventures, please visit my Facebook page.

Parent: Mae