I’ve been very fortunate in making some wonderful connections with some amazing women doing amazing work because of my work with Frankie. Jenny is right up there on my list of being a compassionate, kind, and sincere woman! Thank you to her for this lovely tribute to Frankie!
Frankie (short for Francesca), a Dachshund, injured her back and was diagnosed with intervertebral disc disease (IVDD). Her back legs were paralyzed and her people, Barbara Techel and her husband John of Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin, first thought they would have to put Frankie down. But Frankie’s amazing spirit and will to ‘keep on rolling’ led Barbara to learn about wheelchairs for dogs. Frankie was fitted with her own chair and Barbara learned how to take care of her in her new condition. Barbara learned a lot from Frankie as she discovered that Frankie could still have a wonderful quality of life and had much to teach us.
I learned of Barbara and Frankie a few years ago whentheir first book, Frankie the Walk ‘N Roll Dog
), won the Dog Writers Association of America Merial Human-Animal Bond award. I became pen pal friends with Barbara and watched as Frankie became a therapy dog and Barbara and Frankie reached out to the elderly and to school children. They spread Frankie’s positive messages far and wide, as this differently-abled little dog shared her tremendous spirit and kept on rolling.
Frankie dramatically changed Barbara’s life, gave Barbara a voice and a message that had to be shared, and turned Barbara into an author. In many ways, Barbara’s story with Frankieparalleled my story with 8 State Hurricane Kate. Barbara and I went on the Passions and Possibilities radio show together (listen to our podcast at http://tinyurl.com/passions-and-possibilities
) and both contributed our stories to the book Dogs and the Women Who Love Them: Extraordinary True Stories of Loyalty, Healing and Inspiration
by Allen and Linda Anderson (http://www.dogsandthewomenwholovethem.com/