Pawsitive Tales

Sharing heartwarming tales of animals and their humans.

Hughie — October 20, 2021


~ Hughie ~

Late last year, Hughie, a Cocker Spaniel x Border Collie, found his forever home. In the short amount of time that he and his humans have been together, their lives have been filled with happiness. 

In 2020, Hughie’s humans met him. It was love at first sight. As soon as she picked him up, he snuggled up into her arms. From that moment, they knew it was meant to be. 

With Hughie in their life, he has made their family feel complete. Whenever his human is feeling down, he is right there for her. He’ll snuggle up next to her and stay by her side until she is feeling a bit better. No matter what, he always seems to know how to brighten anyone’s day. 

Not only has Hughie brought happiness to his human’s life but, when he can, he goes with her to work. When there, he always makes their days a bit brighter and can always bring a smile to their faces. Even just when going out and about for walks, Hughie is always met with lots of smiles.

The bond that Hughie has with his humans and his community is amazing. He has brought so much happiness and love into the lives of others. 

Aaliyah and Koko — October 18, 2021

Aaliyah and Koko

~ Aaliyah and Koko ~

Two years ago, Aaliyah met German Shepherd x Swiss Shepherd pup, Koko. Since then, they have become the best of friends and have brought so much positivity to each other’s lives. 

In early 2019, Aaliyah was told of the last puppy of a litter. After seeing photos, she instantly fell in love. She contacted the breeder and they organised a visit. 

While Aaliyah was a little nervous as she’d never had a dog before, she was excited to start this chapter. Once she met Koko, Aaliyah knew she was the perfect puppy for her. 

Throughout the two years that Aaliyah has had Koko, they have both brought so much love and happiness into each other’s lives. Koko can always bring a smile to Aaliyah’s face. 

No matter what is going on in her life, she knows Koko is right there for her and can always brighten her day. If Aaliyah is feeling down, Koko senses this and gives her extra cuddles. As well as this, at the end of a busy and stressful day at work, Koko will excitedly welcome Aaliyah home. 

Aaliyah and Koko enjoy simply spending time together. Whether napping together, cuddles, or going on adventures to new places, they love this time where they can enjoy each other’s company. 

The bond between Aaliyah and Koko is very special. It is obvious how much they love one another and how much they have improved each other’s lives. 

Rachael and Maisy — October 13, 2021

Rachael and Maisy

~ Rachael and Maisy ~

Several years ago, Rachael welcomed Maisy into her life. Following a life-changing event, Maisy lost a leg. However, they have formed a very strong bond and have helped each other immensely. 

For as long as she can remember, Rachael has always loved animals. When she was 15 years old, she was finally able to get a dog of her own. She did many odd jobs and errands in order to earn enough money, and after a few years, she was able to adopt Jack Russell pup, Maisy. 

When she first met Maisy, Rachael immediately fell in love. Despite being small, Maisy had a big personality and made Rachael smile. There was no doubt that she was the perfect dog. 

In 2013, however, Maisy was hit by a car. It was a very challenging time for Rachael and her family. Fortunately, she received great care and made a speedy recovery. This did mean that she had to have her front leg amputated. 

Having only three legs was a big adjustment, but ever since, Maisy hasn’t let this stop her from living her best life. She is a very energetic and loving dog. She and Rachael love spending time together, whether doing chores on the farm, horse riding, going for walks and much more. 

In 2020, Rachael and Maisy participated in the NZ Dog Almighty competition. As part of this, different dogs were tested in agility, obedience and any other talents they may have. It was a great experience for them and it showed New Zealand that while Maisy may only have three legs, she doesn’t let it stop her. She competed amazingly well and won the hearts of many. 

Having Maisy has been life-changing for Rachael. No matter what, Maisy can always bring a smile to her face. Rachael has struggled with mental health issues and through thick and thin, Maisy has always been by her side. On days when Rachael’s mental health is good, Maisy happily jumps and runs around with her. On more difficult days, Maisy snuggles in tight with her. If Rachael is ever upset, or even has a cold, Maisy stops what she’s doing and goes to be with her. 

Both Rachael and Maisy have had such a significant impact on each other. Through both good and bad times, they know they have one another. The unconditional love they share is truly special.

Angela and Freddie — October 11, 2021

Angela and Freddie

~ Angela and Freddie ~

Years ago, Chihuahua pup, Freddie, was found abandoned and in need of urgent care. Today, Freddie, with the help of her human Angela, is thriving. 

In December of 2018, Freddie was found abandoned in a duffel bag. She had evidently suffered a lot in her short life. As a puppy, she had been dropped and had broken both her front legs. Unfortunately, she didn’t receive the necessary help she needed, and her legs healed improperly. Freddie also has dental issues, with having only two canine teeth left, causing an overbite. As well as this, she was born without an epiglottis, some cartilage at the back of the throat, meaning she is at risk of aspirating and must be handfed all her meals.

After being treated, she was put up for adoption at the Hesperia Shelter in California. The shelter contacted Angela, who has always had a passion for animals, and asked her to come in to meet Freddie. Once she laid eyes on the pup, she started crying. It was hard to see such a young animal be in such bad shape. 

Soon after meeting, Angela decided to adopt Freddie and to give her a forever home. Having Freddie in her life has brought Angela endless happiness. While Freddie has had a difficult life, she is always ready to play and loves to cuddle. 

Angela has shared Freddie’s story and through this has helped others. Freddie has shown that animals with health conditions can thrive when cared for. Not only this, but she has inspired many pet owners around the world simply by being her adorable self. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, Freddie did many meet-and-greets with friends all around America. Through this, both Angela and Freddie have met some great people. 

Having Freddie has had a huge impact on Angela. She has shown that, no matter, there is joy and beauty in everything. Freddie may have many health conditions, but she is always happy and doesn’t let her challenges stop her from living her best life. 

Freddie shows everyone that, even though she may look a bit different, being unique is special and that it’s important to embrace all that is you. That everyone is deserving of love and kindness. 

The bond that Angela and Freddie share is a very special one. Angela has supported and loved her companion through all the difficulties, and Freddie has provided her with so much happiness and unconditional love.

Nala — October 8, 2021


~ Nala ~

Nine years ago, Nala found her forever family. In the time they’ve been together since, their bond has only strengthened and she has changed their lives for the better. 

In 2012, Nala’s family met her at a local rescue in South Africa at only 11 weeks old. She was a big Great Dane x Mastiff puppy with bigger paws and a sad, serious look in her eyes. They fell instantly in love but were unable to adopt her then due living in a non-pet friendly place. 

They couldn’t stop thinking about her. A week later they went back and were surprised to see her still there. They were told that she would be soon put down. Without any hesitation, they decided to adopt her, name her Nala and would find a place that she could happily live in. 

Two years later, Nala and her family moved to New Zealand. It was a big adjustment for all of them, especially for Nala arriving in an unknown place. However, not long after arriving, they grew to love it and enjoy it. 

One of the hardest things for Nala’s human when moving to New Zealand was being so far away from her family. Most days she found herself feeling immensely homesick and upset. Having Nala through this time helped her so much. Their afternoon walks gave her the time to focus on the present, as well as being able to spend some time with her fur baby! 

The name ‘Nala’ translates from Swahili to English as ‘gift’. This definitely describes the impact she has had on her family. 

No matter what, Nala is always there for her human. If she is sad, Nala is there to offer snuggles and lick her tears away. She is so full of love and enjoys the company of her humans, and brother, Bam Bam the lorikeet. 

Nala has a very big heart. She loves company and comforting those who might be in need of some extra love. One time, she and her human met someone at a park who was undergoing cancer treatment. Nala stuck next to her to offer her some support. 

Not only has Nala helped her humans, but is also very caring towards other animals. Her humans have helped hedgehogs, birds and other animals over the years. Through this, Nala has been right there to comfort and support them in their recovery. 

In 2021, Nala, Bam Bam and their family went for a road trip. This was a challenge for Nala due to the loud noises fo the van and the motion being similar to the plane she arrived in NZ on. The next morning, however, Nala’s humans found her happily curled up with Bam Bam happily snuggled into her. 

Nala and her human love all the time they get to spend together. Whether going on walks or hikes, cuddles on the couch or in bed, meeting new people and more, this is always precious time for the both of them. 

Even though there may be challenges, Nala can always light up a room and bring a smile to her humans’ face. She spreads so much positivity and joy wherever she goes. 

The bond that Nala and her family share is so special. She has changed their lives for the better by bringing more love and happiness into their lives. The love they all share for each other is evident in how happy they are when in the company of one another. 

Kaitlin and Lupin — October 4, 2021

Kaitlin and Lupin

~ Kaitlin and Lupin ~

Earlier this year, Kaitlin adopted British Labrador pup, Lupin. When he’s older, he’ll become Kaitlin’s medical alert service dog, but for now, he’s simply her companion and best friend. 

Kaitlin faces different health issues on a daily basis as a result of postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS). For Kaitlin, this means her nervous system struggles to regulate blood circulation, heart rate and temperature regulation. This leads to symptoms such as chronic fatigue, dizziness, fainting spells and others.

Due to having POTS, it was suggested that an assistance dog would be helpful to Kaitlin. She began searching for a potential companion right away. After a year of searching, she found Lupin. Once they met, she instantly knew they had a connection. Kaitlin was in love as soon as she saw the small and soft wiggly puppy! 

Each year at Kaitlin’s school, they hold a dance fundraiser for deserving people or organisations. This year, they decided to donate the money to Kaitlin to fund Lupin’s training. Having this support from her community has meant so much to her.

While Lupin is undergoing training, he has already had such a significant impact on Kaitlin. Once fully trained, he will alert her to any symptom flare-ups and help her to a safe place, among other things. For now, however, they’re working on their bond and how they work together.

In August, Kaitlin remembers a weekend when she felt very unwell. She had two fainting spells and didn’t feel well at all. Lupin encouraged her to get up each day. Being met every day with an excited and happy pup always brings a smile to her face. 

No matter what challenges Kaitlin faces, Lupin can always brighten her day. Through his energetic and loving self, he can bring happiness into anyone’s day.

When not training, Lupin loves to play tug and could happily do it for hours. He’ll often bring over toys to Kaitlin when he wants to play. She loves spending time with him and loves how happy he is when playing. 

The bond that Kaitlin and Lupin share is so special, and it will only continue to flourish. In the short amount of time they’ve been together, they’ve already had a positive impact on one another. 

Bradley’s K9 Munchies — October 1, 2021

Bradley’s K9 Munchies

~ Bradley’s K9 Munchies ~

Early in 2021, Bradley opened his own dog treat business, Bradley’s K9 Munchies. Since opening, Bradley has inspired many and has even been nominated for an Attitude Award!

Due to access needs and learning challenges, Bradley found it difficult to find work. Unfortunately, this led to a deep depression. That was until their local area coordinator for Life Unlimited, Jenny Hogg, helped Bradley find his calling: homemade dog treats! 

With the help of his mum, Sarita, sister, Brittany, and official taste tester, Snuggles, Bradley opened his own business. So far, Bradley is selling delicious dog treats made with safe and natural ingredients. He hopes to expand his range in the future to include a variety of treats and other goodies for dogs across Aotearoa. 

Since starting his business, Bradley has been given a sense of purpose and motivation each day. He gets to share this experience with his family and his best friend, Snuggles. Snuggles has been a great support to Bradley and never fails to brighten his day.

Soon after launching Bradley’s K9 Munchies, Bradley was named a finalist in the annual Attitude Awards in the Attitude Enterprise Award category. This has definitely been a memorable moment in his career. 

Through his work, Bradley hopes to provide employment opportunities for those with disabilities within his community. It can be difficult for someone with a disability to find a job, and Bradley wants to show people that having disabilities isn’t an obstacle, you just have to find what works best for an individual. 

Currently, however, he is inspiring many people across the country through his business. He wants those with disabilities to know that it’s important to just keep trying things until you find what brings you the most happiness. 

Not only is Bradley making an impact in the disability community, but a percentage of each product sold go to local rescue, Furever Homes.

While the Covid-19 pandemic slowed Bradley’s K9 Munchies down, Bradley isn’t going to let it stop him. He already has a lot of support from his community, both human and canine, and wants to share his products with as many people and dogs as possible. 

Bradley’s K9 Munchies is an amazing business. Bradley creates delicious treats for our canine companions to enjoy. It is obvious how passionate he is about her business and how much love goes into it. If you want to order some treats for your dog, make sure to go check out Bradley’s K9 Munchies!

Brianne and Emmett — September 29, 2021

Brianne and Emmett

~ Brianne and Emmett ~

A few years ago, Brianne was paired with Emmett, a Pit Bull x Chow Chow. In the time they’ve been together, Emmett has truly had such a positive impact on Brianne’s life and both have brought so much happiness into each other’s lives. 

In 2017, Brianne moved into a new city for her job. It was difficult facing all the new changes, but she was eager to start a new chapter in her life. She had met a breeder who told her they were soon going to have one more litter. As she had been wanting a furry friend, she put her name down for one of the pups. 

When the puppies were born, Brianne went to meet them when they were three weeks old. She immediately fell in love with the only male puppy. He curled up in her lap and was very quiet. Without a doubt, Brianne decided that, once he was old enough, the puppy, Emmett would be her companion. 

Having Emmett has had an immense impact on Brianne. During this time, she was struggling with her mental health. She was away from her family and friends and was finding it a challenge to cope with her symptoms. 

One particularly difficult night, Brianne didn’t know how much more she could cope. Then three-month-old Emmett, sensing she needed help, instantly went to her and put his head in her lap. He gave her hope and strength. 

Not long after, Brianne talked to her mental health team and they all agreed that having Emmett be trained as her service dog would be beneficial. Soon, they both began working on tasks and commands. 

With Emmett at her side, Brianne has had more freedom, a sense of safety, and unconditional love. He has allowed her to live the life she wants to and to know that, no matter what happens in life, Emmett will be right there by her side. 

About a year later, Brianne was finding her mental health to be very difficult to cope with again. She was on the phone with a helpline but didn’t feel she was getting the support she needed. In those moments, Emmett once again saved her. He brought her his favourite toy and, once again, provided her and strength. 

Not only does Emmett help Brianne, but he also helps her roommate. If he senses he may be having challenges with his mental health, Emmett will bring him his favourite toy or simply give him kisses. 

If Brianne is having a tough day, Emmett does all he can to bring a smile to her face. Whether he gives her kisses, performs deep pressure therapy, provides a barrier between strangers, or helping her get out of anxiety-inducing situations, he tries everything he can think of. He can always find the right thing to brighten Brianne’s day. 

Brianne and Emmett love to spend time together. When Emmett isn’t working, he enjoys curling up and relaxing. However, he also follows Brianne around and likes to join her in whatever she is doing. One of Emmett’s favourite activities is playing tug-of-war, which he would happily do all day, every day. 

As well as all this, Emmett encourages Brianne to go outside. They have gone on trail hikes, walks and just out into nature. Even on the days when she doesn’t feel up to leaving the house, Emmett can always convince Brianne to get ready for their next adventure. 

The love that Brianne and Emmett share is so special. It is obvious how much Emmett has improved her life and how much freedom he has given her. They have such a strong bond and have brought immense joy into one another’s lives.

Jacqui and Lance — September 27, 2021

Jacqui and Lance

~ Jacqui and Lance ~

Two years ago, Lance walked into Jacqui’s life. In the time since then, Lance has had such a huge impact on her. Ever since day one, they have formed a very strong bond. 

Jacqui has struggled with having health conditions and disabilities. These can create challenges for her on a daily basis. She found it difficult to have independence and confidence when out. To help her gain some freedom, it was decided that a service dog would be beneficial to her. 

After having this idea, Jacqui spent years looking for her perfect companion. Then, in 2019, she found a breeder who is known to be a very experienced poodle breeder. Of the litter, Jacqui met a small pup and fell instantly in love. 

The pup named Lancelot, or Lance, and Jacqui had an immediate connection. Jacqui was in love with his personality and, of course, how cute he was! After he passed his temperament tests and was old enough, he was able to go home with her. 

Having Lance has been life-changing for Jacqui. He can perform a wide variety of tasks for her, including medical alerts, turning on lights, getting medicine, picking up objects, getting water from the fridge and much more. This has allowed Jacqui to have so much more independence. She can do what she wants, go where she wants and has even enrolled to take university courses, all thanks to Lance. 

Lance has allowed Jacqui to get the most out of her life. In terms of her health, she has never been healthier. She is able to go out and be more active. Each week both Lance and Jacqui go on a new outdoor adventure. As well as this, she also feels safer going out with Lance by her side. 

Not only has Lance helped Jacqui with physical tasks, but he has helped her to gain more happiness in life. He has helped her to live her life to the fullest. They enjoy training together, going for hikes each week, paddleboarding in the summer, trying different sports and simply spending time together. 

No matter what happens in Jacqui’s life, she knows that Lance is right there for her. He has helped her cope, has supported her, given her hope and so much more. She has the freedom and confidence to do what she wants now. Lance has given Jacqui independence and shows her community just how much a service dog can change a life.

Riley and Gatsby — September 24, 2021

Riley and Gatsby

~ Riley and Gatsby ~

Five years ago, Riley met Gatsby. Since then, they have become an amazing team and are inseparable. 

Riley struggles with different health conditions that impact her heart and physical mobility. It was because of this, it was suggested that a service dog would be beneficial. Riley immediately began looking into a potential dog. 

Soon enough, she discovered a new litter of Golden Retriever puppies. Riley and her mum went to meet the breeder and the puppies. As soon as they met them, they both set eyes on one puppy, Gatsby, and immediately knew he was the one. Without a doubt, Riley had found her companion. 

Having Gatsby has helped Riley significantly. He helps through his tasks, such as alerting her to an increase in her heart rate, picking up objects she’s dropped, deep pressure therapy, and much more. 

Not only does he help Riley with physical tasks, but Gatsby provides her with companionship and freedom. She trusts him and knows that no matter what, he’s right there for her. During some of Riley’s toughest moments, Gatsby has supported her and encouraged her to continue fighting. 

If Riley is struggling with her mental health, Gatsby helps to keep her grounded and safe. She knows he is always by her side. Their unconditional love for one another has carried them through so much. 

When Gatsby isn’t working, he and Riley love going to the beach. It’s time for them to spend together and to enjoy each other’s company. Gatsby absolutely loves the water and races across the beachfront.

In early 2021, Riley welcomed Golden Retriever puppy, Cheswick, into her life. One day, he will take over Gatsby’s role as a service dog. For now, he is excited to simply be a puppy and is enjoying some basic training. He has definitely settled into his new life with Riley and Gatsby. 

The impact that Gatsby has had on Riley is huge. He has given her freedom, independence, happiness and love. They both have so much love for each other and it’s obvious in how they look at each other.