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Pet Therapy
& Cassie Bear

Cassie Bear’s Story

On October 19th, 2006, a goldendoodle was born at Smeraglia's Teddy bear goldendoodles.  Her parents were Trinity a golden retriever and Wally a Standard poodle.  She was born in a litter of 4 – 2 girls and 2 boys.

We called about the girls and Sherri told us about the breed and how their temperament would be with her Goldendoodles.  I had asked about having another Therapy dog and to retire my golden Cherese who was 11 years old at the time. I had been volunteering for Happy Tails Pet Therapy in the Atlanta area. Sherri assured me the temperament of the goldendoodles would be great for the task.  Sherri also would pick which puppy would be perfect for the therapy work for the future based upon her testing the temperament of the litter of puppies. So that was it we were hooked we must get a goldendoodle from Sherri.

At the end of December 2006, my husband Steve and I flew down to pick up our new addition to our family.  That is when we met Sherri in person and she handed us Cassie bear.  We were shocked of how calm this puppy was and so loving and beautiful.  We took her home to Georgia and began to fall in love with our new goldendoodle Cassie bear.

At  12 weeks old ,we started training in group and in private lessons.  She was amazing to train and gentle with everyone.  She never would jump on a stranger and was just exactly what Sherri had told us she would be like in the future Cassie bear is amazing, she was just a puppy with task that would be fulfilled to help others.

At 9 months old, she was tested for Happy Tails Pet Therapy organization that I had been with since 2000 with my golden Cherese.   I believe everyone was amazed about her on the day of her test that she became a part of Happy Tails Pet Therapy on July 21, 2007 at only 9 months of age.  What amazing accomplishment for such a young dog to be certified and ready to work.   If my memory is correct that very day I took her into the Hospital at Kennestone Wellstar in Marietta to work in the inpatient rehab.  This was a sad but amazing day.  That was the day I retired Cherese my golden and Cassie bear took her place.  Cherese’s  legs were old and failing her and we were sad for this transition but thankful for Cherese in  helping us in making Cassie bear into the amazing therapy dog that she was going to become.  The very next month August 14th, 2007 Cherese passed away and it is Cherese’s memory and her love has been carried on through Cassie bear and still does to this very day.



Cassie bear is 5 years old now and will be 6 years old on October 19, 2012.

I am amazed all the things Cassie bear has done in her life like training for 2 ½ years with Novice, Rally and private lessons.  She starred in a Middle School Annie Jr. play as Sandy the dog.  She has done so many special events to share her life.  She loves helping others just like I do in my life. She helps me with hearing and knows when I have my limitations with sounds.  So she helps me as well in life.


Cassie bear is still a member and volunteer with Happy Tails Pet Therapy in the Atlanta Area and currently works her therapy magic at Kennestone  Wellstar Hospital in the inpatient rehab. This is where she works with therapist working on balance, standing, walking, memory and fine motor skills putting on bows on Cassie bear with the patients who have brain injury, stroke patients or any other illnesses to be rehabilitated.  Also, She volunteers at 2 Elementary schools one in Marietta and one school in Cobb county for special needs a total of 5 classes from profound children, autism and kids with learning disabilities.  We work with speech, reading; fine motor skills and much more with the children depending on the classroom that we are helping with.  Cassie bear also has love for the elderly at the assisted living in Kennesaw, Ga.   Cassie bear does many special events and charms her way into so many lives. She is gentle giant at 72 pounds who believes she is a small dog at heart.


Now due to traveling back and forth from Florida she is a new certified member of a National Therapy Group with Therapy Dogs, Inc. so she can really spread her love through her travels.  Cassie bear has amazing life and will continue her journey as a Therapy dog as long it is God’s purpose in her life.

Now to our next adventure with Cassie bear is she is getting another sister goldendoodle from Sherri Smeraglia that she will test and pick the perfect new addition to our family. Our new goldendoodle puppy will help in the journey for another therapy dog to help in the quest of helping others for the future.  

Sending bear hugs to you all from Cassie bear
Tiffaney and Steve Barber