In celebration of the Joy Ambassador Program at the Hawaiian Humane Society, we will be occasionally featuring different Joy Ambassador Animal/Human Teams. 

For our first feature, we have Kaia!

Kaia is a certified AKC therapy dog and has been volunteering as a Joy Ambassador with the Hawaiian Humane Society Pet visitation program for the past 3 years. Kaia shares her healing paws with the patients at the Rehabilitation Hospital of the Pacific and the Special Education Center of Hawaii. She is also a member of the Hawaiian Humane Society -youth and community education team and is very lucky to be able to meet and greet so many energetic and happy children and to be able to help raise awareness about the proper care and humane treatment of all animals. 
I love volunteering at the hospitals.  It’s truly amazing what a dog can do to lift someones spirits up when not feeling well.  I think therapy dogs provide a safe place for people, and during illness they can be very helpful in the process of recovery.  Whenever we talk about dogs, it’s such a neutral topic. The patients love talking about their dogs and are excited to share pictures of their own pets. Some of the elderly patients we visit often look lonely and sad and they share they don’t have a dog now but they did when they were younger. Their eyes light up and they smile as they gently pet Kaia and scratch behind her ears and neck. They are so appreciative of the visits. We once visited with a patient that was upset and yelling that he wanted to leave the hospital. After the nurses left the room, Kaia just sat next to his bed quietly. The patient calmed down and started talking and petting her. 
I am thankful for the Hawaiian humane society, joy ambassador program for providing us with the opportunity to share our pets with the community. 

Joy Ambassador

Mahalo to Kaia and Kristine for everything you do!⁠