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Facilitating Miracles: Partnership will bring therapy dogs into county services

Marley's Mutts trained therapy dogs, or "Miracle Mutts," will soon come into services offered by Kern County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services thanks to a recent collaboration
Posted at 11:22 AM, Mar 09, 2024
  • Video shows representatives from Kern BHRS and Marley's Mutts sharing how this partnership will offer a new way to support people seeking treatment.
  • The partnership will allow trained therapy dogs to come into sessions offered by the Behavioral Health and Recovery Services.
  • Marley's Mutts says the partnership could help people going through recovery by using the unique bond formed between humans and canines.


A new form of emotional support one tail wag at a time.

A new partnership between Kern County Behavioral Health and Recovery Services and Marley’s Mutts Miracle Mutts therapy dog program will provide emotional support for people of all ages across the County seeking treatment through hard times.

“I think the benefit will be multifaceted,” said Liz Bailey.

Bailey is a Behavioral Health Administrator with Kern BHRS, and she says there are many benefits to bringing therapy dogs into sessions.

Neighborhood News Reporter Grace Laverriere interviewing Liz Bailey, Behavioral Health Administrator with Kern BHRS

"They might be more excited to come in if they know the dogs are going to be there on that particular day." 

But beyond that, she says there is a deeper reason behind seeking this recent collaboration with Miracle Mutts therapy dogs.

“In theory, they're gonna be able to work through their trauma a little bit faster or easier because they’ll have a furry friend soothing them,” said Bailey.

“What I’ve been able to observe over the last 15 years of doing this is that dogs facilitate miracles in people,” said Zach Skow.  

Skow is the co-founder of Marley’s Mutts. He sat down with me along with his very own Miracle Mutt, Cora Rose.

Skow tells me that the Miracle Mutts program and the recent partnership with the Behavior Health and Recovery Services hit close to home.

“If I hadn’t had those rescue dogs as part of my early recovery when I was suffering through alcoholism and addiction, I wouldn’t be here,” he said.

Skow says the pure, unconditional love dogs show can mean everything to someone going through a very dark time in their life.

“You need that when you’re in recovery when you’re trying to break through that wall of early sobriety," Skow said. "I love that we’re able to team up with the County. I’m excited to see what kind of magical bonds and shifts our dogs can create.” 

Bailey says for now, the BHRS is in the planning stage of the partnership, but she says they are proud to offer this new therapeutic service.

“This is a relatively new partnership that we have created, but we’re just really excited," Bailey said. "We’re really happy to embark on this and see where this goes.”

Skow says Miracle Mutts began around ten years ago, and this latest partnership maintains their mission to bring people joy through therapy dogs.

“What we’re there to do is to lend the magic and the medicine of the human-animal bond to help make people’s lives better.”

Miracle Mutts offers therapy dog training to grow their team, and more information on the training is found on their website.

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