Smiley, the beloved blind therapy dog who brought smiles to the faces of millions has passed away. His mom, Joanne George, shared the sad news on social media with a picture and a caption that read: “It’s the only way to repay what he’s done for us all. We will let him go tomorrow. He’s had enough.”
The touching photo shows Smiley and his lovely smile holding hands with Joanne. Joanne rescued Smiley from a puppy mill when he was 2 years old. He was born blind and with dwarfism. But from the moment Joanne brought him home, she knew Smiley had something special.
He had a special talent for making people smile and feel better so she trained him as a therapy dog. He spent many years comforting people of all ages, whether they were hospital patients, children with autism and seniors in nursing homes in Ontario, Canada.
His smile was infectious and Joanne described him as a “real-life stuffed animal”.
Smiley was especially loved by her son, Shepherd. She shared an emotional photo of Shepherd at Smiley’s graveside, writing, “A boy and his dog sometimes have to part ways.”
The 15-year-old Golden Retriever was put to sleep on Saturday, Oct 16, 2017 after a battle with cancer. He was diagnosed with stomach and liver cancer a few months ago.
“He has been so happy lately with extra pep in his step, so this is so hard to comprehend,” Joanne said.“You will never be forgotten Smiley.”
Smiley’s memory was honoured with a candlelight vigil. Rest in Peace, Smiley.
Prior to his death, Joanne wrote a book “Smiley: A Journey of Love”, which is awaiting a second imprint.