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The Story of Liam – A life of service

Helping Liam fulfill his destiny

We all know that seva, or sevice, is a big part of the path of yoga. And while seva is the second limb of human dharma – certain animals also have a role to play. Here Tina shares with us her first-person account about how she wished to help others – and who else is involved in this endeavor.

For years I have been looking for something I could do to give back. I had heard about being a puppy raiser – i.e. caring for a pup that would in due course become a service dog – and thought that would be a good fit for me.

I had to wait a few years until the timing was right, as it is a big undertaking. In time, everything started coming together, and I went through all the interviews and paperwork. On July 16, 2015, we drove to Long Island, NY to pick up our puppy – and the journey began.

Canine Companions for Independence is a great organization. Here is a little how it works. The 9-week old pup – Liam – which I now have will remain with me until he is 18 months old. During this time my main job is to raise the pup and slowly and carefully introduce him to as many different situations as possible – i.e. socialization.

Then when Liam is a year-and-a-half old he will go back to Canine Companions where he will begin in earnest his training as a service dog.

Canine Companions will assess his strengths and then match him with a client who is physically challenged. Canine Companions monitors the situation to ensure it is a good match. In this way Liam is gifted – free of cost – to a person with disabilities who needs the support and skill that Liam can provide.

I am so happy to be a part of the wonderful work they are doing, and all the people they help.

Meet Liam


And here are a few more shots without his uniform / cape…

Liam - all three


  1. Tina, this is so exciting!! What an amazing undertaking! I am SUCH a dog lover and so in awe of their spirits….I hope you plan on bringing Liam to class a couple times as part of his socialization process – would so love to meet him! You are a sweet soul indeed!

  2. Thank you Annie! Yes I will be bringing him. I need to get him house trained first. He’s a ways from being able to lay quietly in a room full of us doing yoga. Right now that’s MY escape! It’s so nice to have so much support.

  3. Wow Tina! This is an amazing undertaking! More proof to me of what a wonderful and caring person you are. Liam and his future family are so fortunate that you are investing your great energy into such a good cause.
    Liam is very handsome and I love that picture of you both together!
    Hugs! Liz

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