Apollo’s First Flight
Apollo’s story was shared with Pilots N Paws by the rescue volunteer who started Apollo’s early training to become a service dog.
Meet Apollo, a 9-month-old Australian Shepard. I trained and fostered Apollo since he was 8 weeks old. His owner is a young woman with cerebral palsy in a wheelchair with significant mobility issues. She named him, and very well it seems after his first flight! We did basic training and Mommy and Me visits when his owner was in Tallahassee, but Mommy moved to Tampa, and it was time for Apollo to join her for further companion dog training and his forever home.
Our, Pilot, Jerry was fantastic. He immediately greeted “the lil guy” with lots of love and kisses. Apollo was great on the tarmac, fearless and inquisitive. We got him loaded up and heard not a peep from him the entire trip.
In Tampa, we met Vinnie, who is Apollo’s mom’s regular driver. Vinnie is fantastic and wanted Apollo to “ride in style.” He gave and got lots of hugs and kisses, too.
Then it was time for me, foster Mommy, to say goodbye. It was hard after having him for so long, but when I hugged him for the “photo op,” he reached up and gave me a gentle kiss. Jerry was quick and caught it all with my camera. I’ll miss the lil guy.
When we touched back down in Tallahassee, Jerry and I had to take a “MISSION ACCOMPLISHED” pic. Jerry was a fantastic, compassionate and personable guy, and the entire experience was a joy. Not only Jerry, but also Million Aire in Tallahassee and Signature Jet Services in Tampa were friendly, professional and helpful. We even got to meet some Navy chopper pilots!
Thank you so much, Pilots N Paws, for helping a challenged person get the love, affection and assistance of this wonderful, gentle puppy. He will improve her quality of life immensely!