At Your Service.......
Molly Johnson, BS, KPA CTP, CHES - Owner and Consultant
Molly has more than twenty years of experience with registered therapy
dogs as an owner, volunteer, and trainer. Her education includes a B.S.
Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and credits earned
toward a Masters degree in Health Education from the University of
Alabama-Tuscaloosa. In 2010, Molly returned to school, completed six
months of intensive work, and graduated with honors to earn Karen Pryor
Academy Certified Training Partner status. Her professional career has
been spent entirely in the non-profit sector, working primarily in the areas
of public relations, marketing, education, community outreach, and
Dogs have always been an integral part of Molly’s life. She is a Karen Pryor
Academy Certified Training Partner (one of 700 in the world), a Certified
Humane Education Specialist, a Puppy Start Right Preschool Instructor, a
member of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT), an APDT C.L.A.S.S.
(canine life and social skills) Evaluator, and a tester/observer for Therapy
Dogs, Incorporated. Molly founded Compassionate Canines, Incorporated, a
501(c)(3) non-profit volunteer therapy dog organization, and is currently
president and treasurer. She has worked with hospice organizations, funeral
homes, public libraries, schools, and other community organizations to
establish therapy dog programming. She works with handlers in the
Appleton, WI community through her local training business,
Canine Clicker College. Molly is a positive reinforcement, clicker trainer who
believes effective training is fun and engaging for handler and dog alike.
Molly stays active as a volunteer in the community with her three
registered therapy dogs, Beamish, Fitzgerald William, and Madigan.
Dog Support Staff - Active
Beamish is an eleven year old golden retriever mix who was a former
shelter dog. In her seven year career as a registered therapy dog, she has
made more than 500 visits to people in a variety of settings. She (and
Molly) present frequently at conferences at the national, state and local
levels. In 2006, Beamish was included in a Wisconsin Public Radio story
and featured in the Appleton Post-Crescent newspaper with her favorite
hospice patient, Jimmy. In 2009, Beamish and Madigan were guests on the
Kathleen Dunn show on WPR 88.1 FM to spread the word about
Compassionate Canines, Incorporated, a non-profit volunteer therapy dog
group based in Neenah, Wisconsin. Beamish attends visitations and funeral
services as requested at Wichmann and Fargo Funeral Homes and has
provided comfort and support to grieving families during “at need” funeral
planning. Beamish’s gentle manner, sweet face, and calm demeanor endear
her to all who meet her!
Fitzgerald William is a one year old basset hound who became a
registered therapy dog early in 2014. His calm demeanor, entertaining
looks, and sweet personality are a hit with anyone who dares fall under the
spell of those beautiful brown eyes. Though he is new to the therapy dog
world, his strengths appear to be snuggling close to hospice patients and
their families and providing a calming effect for folks struggling with mental
illness and drug addiction. We look forward to updating this page with more
stories of visits!
Madigan is a seven year old black labrador retriever who was a former
shelter dog. A sweet and gentle soul, Madigan showed promise early on as a
potential therapy dog. Since her therapy dog registration in 2008, she has
comforted many skilled nursing home residents and hospice patients and
their families. Her favorite visits, however, are to those struggling with
mental illness at Winnebago Mental Health Institute in Oshkosh,
Wisconsin. She is a highly skilled clicker-trained dog who can learn your
name and "cuddle" (rest her head on your lap) on cue in a matter of minutes!
Dog Support Staff - Deceased
Dudley was a therapy dog for eight years, beginning his career after being
rescued from the Mid America Basset Rescue at the age of three. Despite a
rough start in life, he spent much time working with Molly and became a
registered therapy dog at the age of four. He went on to participate in
library-based reading programs for struggling readers; visit preschool
children, sit quietly with hospice patients, and snuggle with people battling
mental illness. In 2009, Dudley was part of the local Xavier High School
production of "Oklahoma!" His droopy face and long face delighted
everyone and he will be forever missed. Rest in peace, dear basset boy.
Calvin Coolidge was a sweet, soulful black labrador retriever discovered
at a Manitowoc shelter in 1996. He served in the role of registered therapy
dog for ten years, visiting more than 3,000 people in his career. He was a
favorite among folks in skilled nursing, hospital, and assisted living settings.
His true love was snuggling with folks receiving hospice care; he provided
much love and comfort. One of our most memorable visits was with an older
adult, who, upon hearing his name, stated proudly, "Calvin Coolidge was a
great man! I voted for him!". The joy and happiness he brought to others
was immeasurable. Calvin was the inspiration for Canine Comfort, LLC, and
I will forever remember him. Rest in peace, best friend.
Canine Comfort, LLC
Your partner in therapy dog program development