MISSOURI — The P.H.A.R.M. Dog USA program was founded to help farmers or farm family members with a disability or disease, stay active on the farm.
Click play below to hear KMZU’s Amanda Wagner speak with Jackie Allenbrand, founder and director of the P.H.A.R.M. Dog Project.
The motto of P.H.A.R.M Dog USA is “helping farmers to heel and heal.”
“My husband and I have cow/calf pairs,” said Allenbrand. “…training dogs is nothing new but training them specifically to help a farmer with a disability saves some time and energy. I thought why don’t we start training specifically for specific tasks and that’s kind of how the idea came about.”
Pets Helping Agriculture in Rural Missouri is what P.H.A.R.M stands for and that is exactly what these pets have done. The breeds of dogs used are boarder collies for herding and labs saved from shelters for service work. Tasks that these dogs are trained for include: retrieving tools, opening gates, mobility and brace support, companionship and carrying buckets. The herding dogs also help out with managing the livestock.
Allenbrand shared a story of a farmer who is paralyzed and recently received a dog from this program. The dog Duke will help him with tasks around the farm, along with sorting and loading cattle. Allenbrand also introduced a woman named Alda Owen, who also received a dog from this program. Owen is legally blind and also was diagnosed with breast cancer in her 50’s. She stated that her dog has helped her tremendously on the farm.
“We know farmers are hard working men and women,” said Allenbrand. “…if we can help them out in some way, we are going to try and do our best to do that.”
For more information about P.H.A.R.M Dogs USA visit: www.pharmdog.org or visit their Facebook page at PHARM Dog USA.
You can also contact Jackie Allenbrand through email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 660-235-0128.