Pawsitive Tales

Sharing heartwarming tales of animals and their humans.

Tamarin and Marley — August 29, 2022

Tamarin and Marley

~ Tamarin and Marley ~

Ten years ago, Tamarin first met Marley. Since then, they have been by each other’s sides through thick and thin and have formed a very special bond. 

In 2012, Tamarin heard of a litter of Labrador x German Shepherd puppies. As soon as she saw the photos, she was in love. Deciding to meet them, Tamarin drove three hours. When she arrived, a small black puppy, named Marley, ran up to her and, as he climbed into her arms, melted her heart. Tamarin knew that, in that moment, he was perfect. During the drive home, Marley sat on his new human’s lap and they have been best friends ever since. 

Since day one, Marley has helped Tamarin hugely. Whenever she is feeling anxious or down, she knows her canine companion is right there. Marley just seems to know when his human needs company and a hug. When Tamarin was going through a difficult separation, her furry friend was right there to remind her that it would be okay and that she wasn’t alone during that time. 

Just before the 2020 Covid-19 lockdown in New Zealand, one of Tamarin’s family members was diagnosed with incurable cancer. After hearing this, she couldn’t eat, would wake up at 2am with severe anxiety, withdrew from friends and family and found mundane chores nearly impossible. 

Amid the first lockdown, Tamarin lost her job, furthering her anxiety. Having Marley, however, made a world of difference. Each day, he would bring a smile to his human’s face and encourage her to get out of bed and go outside for their daily walks with his big brown eyes. Slowly but surely, Tamarin found hope in this, all thanks to Marley and his puppy dog eyes. 

Wanting to help others who may have been struggling with their mental health, Tamarin had an idea to start her own business – Better Tea Co. There, she sells a range of teas made to help with anxiety, digestive health and recovery and restoration of one’s overall wellbeing. Each day at work, Marley joins his human and brings joy to everyone he meets. From Tamarin’s colleagues to simply passersby, everyone who meets him immediately loves him. 

Having Marley reminds Tamarin be mindful and appreciate the smaller things in life. They enjoy going to the beach to breathe in the fresh air and play in the water together, as well as meeting other dogs and their humans. No matter how the day may have started, Tamarin and Marley always leave the beach smiling from ear to ear. At the end of a long day, they also love simply snuggling up together and enjoying a tasty snack!

Marley has changed Tamarin’s life hugely. He has brought love and light into his human’s life and each moment they have together is always cherished. Tamarin and Marley truly share such a special bond.

Lizzy and Phoebe — July 1, 2022

Lizzy and Phoebe

~ Lizzy and Phoebe ~

A few years ago, Lizzy met an adorable rescue pup named Phoebe. Since then, they have formed a very special bond and have hugely impacted each other’s lives. 

Lizzy had always wanted a furry friend, but due to family members having allergies to cats and dogs, it was not something she thought would happen. However, one day, a family friend told them she had rescued a litter of puppies and was looking to rehome them. Not long after, Lizzy and her family decided to meet the puppies. The smallest of the litter was very excited to meet Lizzy and her dad. They left, but Lizzy couldn’t stop thinking about the pup. 

Sometime later, Lizzy’s mum fell ill and stayed at the hospital. After she was discharged, their family friend offered to bring over some food for them. Little did they know, she had brought over something much better – a puppy! That night, everything changed. They had their own puppy and named her Phoebe. 

Phoebe has been life-changing not only for Lizzy, but for the whole family. She’s full of beans and brings so much joy to everyone around her. When Lizzy’s dad is overseas for work, Phoebe keeps everyone at home company. If anyone is feeling down, she can instantly cheer them up with her mischievous antics. Not only this, but everyone in the neighbourhood loves seeing Phoebe. She’s become a local celebrity and whenever she’s going for a walk, people love stopping to give her a pat. 

Both Lizzy and Phoebe love going on adventures together. From going to the local park to car rides, they just love spending this time with one another. As well as this, Lizzy loves taking Phoebe out for puppy playdates with her littermates. She loves seeing the immense joy it brings her canine companion. 

One of Lizzy and Phoebe’s favourite things is going to the beach for a swim. The beach is Lizzy’s happy place, so being able to share this with her best friend makes it even more special. It’s time when they get to just be present in the moment and enjoy each other’s company. 

Since adopting Phoebe, Lizzy and her family have adopted a second dog, Fletcher. Phoebe has been a great big sister by teaching him how to play, how to interact with other dogs and people, and more. Not only this, but they, too, have developed a great bond and love playing together. 

Having Phoebe has even inspired Lizzy to start her own business, Collie and Co. From training together to learning how to effectively communicate with dogs, it has all had a huge impact on Lizzy. She hopes to continue with her business, selling dog tags, keyrings, drinking glasses and more – something for dogs and humans!

The bond that Lizzy and Phoebe share is so special. They have improved each other’s life and have brought one another so much happiness, love and joy. 

Ellys and Jess — April 4, 2022

Ellys and Jess

~ Ellys and Jess ~

A few years ago, Ellys met Jess, a German Shepherd x Ridgeback. At first, Jess was distrustful and was unsure of the world around her. However, thanks to the love and care from Ellys, Jess has flourished into a well-mannered and all around very good dog.

In 2019, Jess had been rehomed by her previous owners and stayed in a shelter for a few months. Ellys and her husband, Chern, had been wanting to get a dog for a while. When they were able to, they decided to register to be fosters for their local shelter. They were called in to meet five dogs. One of them was Jess, who was the oldest, at 5-years-old, and was very timid. 

Ellys and Chern fostered Jess for about two months. During that time, there were five people interested in adopting her. However, they all fell through. As Ellys had grown to love Jess and didn’t want to see her go back to the shelter, she and Chern decided to adopt her. While Jess was nervous for some time, she was always happy to snuggle with her humans. At first, she slept in the living room, however, she soon moved, and has since stayed, in Ellys’ bedroom. 

Since adopting Jess, Ellys has learnt and gained so much. As Jess had shown reactive behaviours, Ellys felt it was best to train with her to better manage this. With the help of a professional trainer, she learnt a lot, both how best to support Jess and about canine physical and mental health in general. Ellys is also encouraged to be more active through daily walks and lots of play. 

Not only has Ellys enjoyed watching Jess grow and become more confident around other dogs, but she has also found a passion for dog training. When Ellys first adopted her, she only knew ‘sit’, but now knows many tricks, such as ‘down’, ‘shake’, ‘stay’, and many more. This is also time they get to simply enjoy each other’s company and strengthen their bond. 

Jess has helped Ellys so much. She has brought happiness and love into her life and has certainly changed her life for the better. Each day, when Ellys returns home from work, she is greeted by Jess’ wagging tail and a big smile. Every day is made a little bit brighter for Ellys because Jess is in it. 

Zoey and Raven — February 8, 2022

Zoey and Raven

~ Zoey and Raven ~

Almost two years ago, Zoey adopted Raven, a very sweet and friendly Border Collie, German Shepherd and Labrador cross puppy. Since then, they have become the best of friends and Raven has helped Zoey immensely. 

Zoey first met Raven as a puppy. Initially, Raven was living with Zoey’s neighbour, but they weren’t able to care for her, and Zoey asked if she could meet the pup. As soon as Raven saw her, she ran straight into her arms and started licking her face. From that moment, Zoey knew Raven was the perfect dog. 

For a few years, Zoey has struggled with mental health issues. Since adopting Raven, not only has she become Zoey’s best friend, but she has also become her psychiatric service dog. Raven helps her by alerting her to low iron, reminds her to take her medications, does deep pressure therapy (DPT), and much more. Above all, Raven is Zoey’s companion and helps her to have more confidence when out and about. 

One specific time Zoey recalls Raven having a huge impact was helping her through a very dark time. Her mental health had become overhwhelming and she closed herself in the bathroom, in tears. Raven immediately knew something was wrong. She pawed at the bathroom door for 20 minutes and, once Zoey let her in, she laid down on her lap and wouldn’t leave until she felt Zoey was feeling better. 

Since then, Zoey’s mental health has gradually gotten better thanks to Raven’s love and support. She has provided her human with so much happiness and has given her a sense of purpose. Because of the huge impact Raven has had on Zoey, she’s been enrolled in a therapy dog program. Once she completes this, she’ll be able to help others.

Not only has Raven had an impact on Zoey’s mental health, but she has also impacted her physical health. From going out each day to walk Raven, to doing dog agility training, having her canine companion has had a huge impact. Raven loves to learn and Zoey enjoys teaching her new tricks and commands, so it’s time when they just get to be together and have fun. 

Raven has truly had an incredible impact on Zoey. She has been by her side through thick and thin. It is obvious how much love and care they share for one another. They share such a special bond.

Amber and Charlie — January 21, 2022

Amber and Charlie

~ Amber and Charlie ~

Three years ago, Amber welcomed Shepsky mix, Charlie, into her life. Since then, they have formed a very special bond and have improved each other’s lives. 

At the start of 2019, Amber had heard of a litter of puppies that had just been born. The owners were searching for good homes, and Amber fell instantly in love with one pup in particular. She quickly decided to adopt her and named her Charlie. 

Having Charlie has helped Amber immensely. She has supported her human through many challenging times, including a difficult break-up and the death of a close friend. With Charlie at her side, Amber knew she wasn’t alone and that she was loved. 

Before having Charlie, Amber was in a bad relationship. It was a rough time for her, but after adopting Charlie, Amber felt she had to do something. Charlie gave her the strength to leave the relationship and helped her to break free and live a better life for herself.

No matter what challenges Amber might face, Charlie never fails to make her smile. She’s mischievous and loves to play! When playing together, Amber loves focusing on just Charlie. She can always brighten Amber’s day. 

As well as this, they love going on adventures together. Whether exploring new places or going for walks, Amber and Charlie love having this time together. They know it’s time they can just spend in each other’s company and just be. 

It is obvious how much of an impact Charlie has had on Amber. She has helped her through so many tough times and has helped her to be where she is now and to find a positive relationship with someone who cares for them both. Charlie’s dad loves her, and they’re definitely a happy family. The love that Amber and Charlie have for one another is so strong.

Lupin — December 22, 2021


~ Lupin ~

Just over a year ago, after a difficult start to life,  Lupin was welcomed into her forever home. She has come a long way and is now thriving. 

In 2020, Lupin’s humans had been looking for the perfect fur baby. It took some time, but soon she found an adoption ad for a Shepsky puppy. She instantly fell in love and contacted the seller. 

Unfortunately, it appeared the seller wasn’t quite who they appeared to be and had to be followed up with a lot. Lupin seemed to be scared in many of the photos sent. Despite this, Lupin’s human had made up her mind and had no doubt that Lupin was the puppy for her. 

It took a bit of time after the adoption to figure out the right name. They tried different names, but none felt right. It wasn’t until a friend of Lupin’s human suggested the name ‘Lupin’ – from the Latin word lupus, meaning wolf. Lupin’s human and her partner got engaged in Iceland and the name Lupin was everywhere; it just seemed meant to be! 

It was quite an adjustment for Lupin. When she was adopted, she was very timid and shy. It was difficult for her human to see her like this. It wasn’t until she had found her forever home that she had even seen a toy. The first time she played with one, she was unsure, but now loves chasing after and chewing on any toy she can find! Thanks to the care of her human, Lupin has definitely come out of her shell. 

Having Lupin has brought so much happiness into her humans’ lives. Since adopting her, she has brought joy into their home, encourages them to go outside for a walk and some fresh air, and give them an additional purpose each day. Every day they ensure that Lupin is able to live her best life after having a tough start. 

Lupin is still quite young and continues to thrive with her family. She has taught her humans patience and has grown into a beautiful, gentle, smart and occasionally cheeky doggo. No matter what, she just seems to know how to bring a smile to her human’s face. They can’t imagine life without her. 

Not only has Lupin had an impact on her family, but also on those in her community. She has become a well known Houdini and can often find her way into all kinds of mischief while her humans are at work. She has a lot of love to give, however, and loves to make people laugh. Everyone who meets her falls in love with her bubbly personality. 

One of Lupin’s favourite places is outside in the garden. This is somewhere she and her human love to spend time together, especially when the sunsets. When she returns home from work, Lupin always excitedly greets her by putting her head between her knees. She also loves belly rubs and snuggles with her humans, and the occasional treat! 

The impact that Lupin has had on her family has been huge. She has brought so much happiness and love into their lives and continues to brighten their days with her positivity. 

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. 

Emily and Nike — September 1, 2021

Emily and Nike

~ Emily and Nike ~

In 2018, Emily met her service dog, Nike. Little did she know that soon enough, Nike would not only be her service dog but also her best friend. 

Emily struggles with a few different conditions. These can have a big impact on her daily life. She found it difficult to leave her house and to feel safe when going out into the community. Because of this, it was recommended to her that she may benefit from having a service dog. 

Soon, Emily began searching for a dog who could help her navigate everyday life. She then met a two-year-old German Shepherd named Nike. It was then decided that Nike would become Emily’s service dog. Initially, however, Emily was unsure of how much her life would change with Nike. 

It wasn’t long before Nike showed just how much she could help her human. Because of Nike, Emily was able to go out more. Things that might have been difficult, such as going to a doctor’s appointment, getting the groceries or going to a park, were made easier thanks to Nike. She helped make her surroundings more accessible for Emily. 

In 2020, Emily began experiencing new symptoms. These were frightening for her, but thankfully Nike was right there for her. One day, Emily was sitting in on a lecture, with Nike asleep next to her. Suddenly, Nike woke up and started to press into Emily and began barking. Shortly after, Emily fainted and fell to the floor. 

When she woke up, Nike was laying right across her. All of Emily peers and her professor were concerned and told her she had a seizure. After this happened a few more times, she was diagnosed with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES). Thanks to Nike’s constant care, Emily was kept safe during these episodes. This was something she hadn’t been trained for, it was her natural instinct. 

Since receiving the diagnosis of PNES and with the help of Nike, Emily has been able to keep her driver’s license, continue with her studies and will even graduate at the end of the year. The impact Nike has had on her human is truly amazing. 

Having Nike has changed Emily’s life for the better. Not only does she help Emily to be part of her community and to get out and about, but she has made the world much more accessible for her human. She brings joy to Emily’s life, as well as more confidence and independence. The impact she has had is immeasurable. 

No matter what may be happening in Emily’s life, she knows that Nike will be right by her side. They enjoy each other’s company and simply spending time together.  Not only this, but they love to play and go on adventures together, too.

The bond between Emily and Nike is something truly special. Nike has changed Emily’s life and their bond will only continue to flourish. It is evident how much love they have for one another and how much happiness they bring to each other’s lives. 

Ammo — April 19, 2021


~ Ammo ~

In 2020, Ammo, a German Shepherd X Labrador, was welcomed into his forever home.  He and his human share a special bond and have helped one another immensely.

Unfortunately, Ammo’s human was grieving from the loss of their previous dog, Mocha.  Mocha, a sweet, black Cocker Spaniel, meant the world to them, and losing him was devastating.  It was in 2020, Ammo walked right into their life and brought a glimmer of hope and happiness.  

It was love at first sight for Ammo’s new human.  Ammo has a black birthmark on his tongue, and to his human, this felt like a connection to Mocha and so it was simply meant to be.  Since then, the two have only become closer and have formed such a special friendship.  

Ammo’s human works at Pet First Aid NZ.  Pet First Aid NZ is a course that people can take to learn about how to perform first aid for pets.  This can be extremely helpful to know in case of any emergencies.  There, people learn CPR, recognising poisons and dangerous objects, and more to ensure animals are safe in the event of any emergency.  They run regular courses all across New Zealand.

At the Pet First Aid course, Ammo can be seen helping out!  If Ammo is at a course, students will practise their bandaging skills on him.  He will patiently sit there and wait for the student to finish.  He helps bring a sense of calm to the courses and of course, adds a special canine touch!

When he isn’t helping at first aid courses, Ammo enjoys everything and anything!  He loves meeting friends, playing with toys and absolutely loves to play fetch!  Ammo is a very active dog and it shows through his excitement when out and about.  

It is evident how loved Ammo is.  His human thinks the world of him and cares so much for him.  After losing Mocha, having Ammo has brought happiness and brightens their day.  Ammo is very energetic and sometimes a little bit clumsy, but this just makes him all the more of a delight to be around!

Aryanna and Neville — March 15, 2021

Aryanna and Neville

~ Aryanna and Neville ~

Neville found his forever human, Aryanna at only 6 weeks old.  Since then, the two have become the best of friends and care immensely for each other.  

Aryanna struggles with different health conditions that can cause daily challenges.  Because of this, it was decided that a service dog would be beneficial to help her in her day-to-day life.  She met with a dog, unfortunately, a few weeks later, the dog couldn’t fulfil the role of a service dog. 

It was then, she met Neville, a German Shepherd x Australian cattle dog.  He was born from a litter of one of Aryanna’s friends.  Her friend offered Neville to her as both a pet and to be a service dog.  Soon, Neville was welcomed into the home of Aryanna.  

Initially, having a puppy was an adjustment for Aryanna.  Neville was an excitable and active puppy and needed a lot of patience and attention.  It was a challenge, but once Aryanna and Neville began to understand each other, they flourished as a team.  

Having Neville has helped immensely.  Aryanna has a few health challenges, and with her friend by her side, she can have more independence.  When her blood sugar is dropping, Neville alerts her and helps her to a safe place to prevent her from fainting and getting sick.  

Not only this, but Aryanna also struggles with anxiety.  Neville can also alert her to an oncoming panic attack.  If this happens, he helps her by doing deep pressure therapy (DPT).  This involves Neville stretching out across Aryanna’s lap and hitting pressure points to activate the parasympathetic nervous system.  This prompts her body to be guided out of a panic attacker quicker.  During this, Neville will stay by Aryanna for as long as she needs him to.  Alongside her anxiety, Aryanna may dissociate.  If this happens, Neville knows how to help her and will guide her to her car for safety.  

One specific event was at a bowling alley.  This is a place that causes great anxiety for Aryanna, but she went as part of a group.  Once there, she felt her anxiety bubbling up but felt a little bit better knowing Neville was right there beside her.  Soon, she became overwhelmed by the bowling alley, and Neville immediately began performing DPT.  

Afterwards, Aryanna realised that, with Neville, she could enjoy going out and having some independence.  Before Neville, she would simply avoid places that could lead to anxiety, but now, she feels more confident to do this.  That specific day made Aryanna realise how much of a positive impact Neville has on her life.  

Something the two enjoy doing is training.  Neville loves to learn new tricks and ways to help his human companion.  This is sometimes done at home and with toys, but they also enjoy going out and about to test new commands.  For Aryanna, training isn’t just teaching Neville new things, but a way to bond and communicate with him.  It brings an immense amount of joy to them both.  Seeing that they can achieve anything together always brings a smile to Aryanna’s face. 

With Neville in her life, Aryanna has gotten her independence back.  She can now feel safe to go out and do things she couldn’t before, such as grocery shopping.  She no longer worries about what might happen because she knows Neville is right there for her.  Neville evidently cares a lot for Aryanna, and she cares just as much for him.  He brings her happiness, independence and a companion.  The bond they share is truly amazing and the love between them is so strong.