Adult resident Matt L. begins career in pet care

November 13, 2017

 Through Latham’s vocational pet care program, Matt L from our Wareham group residence is enjoying his weekly dog walking job. He absolutely loves taking care of Brindie the Old English bulldog, according to Vocational Director Maura Smith. Maura worked closely with Matt to develop his individualized career plan – he was 100% focused on caring for animals. The match-up of Matt and his four-legged friend Brindie illustrates what Maura calls the win-win-win of Latham Lifelong Petcare: Dog walking and pet sitting by Latham’s adult individuals benefits the animal, the individual with special needs, and the pet owner who needs pet care on a regular basis.

Latham’s Residential Manager Patricia Morgan said Matt’s experience with the pet care program has provided him with the confidence to learn and try new skills in the community, as well as the freedom that comes with having a paying job. He works on communication skills with Brindie’s owner, providing information to her about his time with Brindie and completing a dog assessment form each time he completes a dog walk. Patricia noted that being part of the pet care program has allowed Matt to open up and share his knowledge of dogs with others. “He feels he is at his happiest when he is interacting with dogs, and animals seem to really become at ease when they are around Matt,” she said. “While Matt is excited to have some extra spending money to buy the XBOX games he loves, he also feels proud knowing that he is giving back in his favorite way, caring for animals.”

The mission of Latham’s Lifelong Pet care Program is to create vocational opportunities for our students and adult residents with complex special needs while meeting the pet care needs of the Cape Cod community. Latham’s pet care program currently has 3 openings for weekly dog walking services in the Brewster/Orleans area, the Sandwich area, and the Wareham area. The vocational program’s pet care flyer is available here. 

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