Some would say Dawn's life has gone to the dogs. In this case, that's a good thing. Her passion for working with animals is helping to improve the lives of others with physical disabilities.
For more than ten years now Dawn has been volunteering for Helping Paws of Minnesota, Inc. It all started when she agreed to take in a foster puppy. She used her degree in occupational therapy along with her love of animals to train it as a service dog. Since then Dawn has trained four more dogs. She also works closely with the families who need to use service dogs on a daily basis.
But that's just part of Dawn's volunteer efforts. She also designs and sews products used by the service dogs. It could be something as simple as a strap that allows the dog to open a door --- to something as complicated as a customized, fitted dog backpack. For fun, Dawn sews doggie scarves, neck collars and toys to be sold at fundraisers. She even finds time to takes her own dogs to Children's Hospital to provide animal assisted therapy to the youngsters.
As a hobby, Dawn spins dog hair into yarn which she then weaves into cloth. She also likes to make baskets.
Her motto: "Find your passion and follow it!"
Helping Paws of Minnesota, Inc. and
Bark Avenue on Parade, Inc.