Luna – the Mental Health Assistance AND Herding Rescue Dog

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(no children were harmed in the taking of these photos .. just nibbled a bit 😉 )

Montecollina Bore was a gorgeous place to swim whilst in the SA outback. No other people for kilometres around, except for the odd passing road train, it was brilliant having a deep pool of cool artesian water to give respite from the soaring temperatures.

As we’ve mentioned before, Luna ADORES water and swimming. She skipped around us as we walked in the direction of the bore, and once in sight of it, pelted to the edge to launch herself in.

We first discovered that the pool was very deep when Luna, who’d been walking in the shallows, disappeared before bobbing back up, soaked all over, and came paddling back to shore. She’d slipped on the muddy clay and right into the deep water. No “easing into it” gradually the way we humans do!

German Shepherds are exceptionally clever, and have a strong herding and protective instinct as well. We’ve observed in the past, Luna pacing around a pool, vocalising her concern for the kids swimming. If we secured her to the fence by her lead, she becomes anxious because she can’t get to the kids. Here at Montecollina Bore, Luna couldn’t make up her mind if she wanted the kids IN or OUT of the water!

While swimming in the shallows, if the kids splashed too much for her liking, Luna would try and grab them by their arm/hand/clothing, to bring them back to shore.

Then when the kids went to get out of the water, she’d chase them back in to keep them together, or if already out, tried to herd them back out if they tried to go in. Suffice to say, it all became a game, and we had some great laughs with the kids “running the Luna gauntlet”, to get into or out of the water. It was great exercise for everyone, and kept Luna on her toes.

Luna is protective of us all, and is never at ease if one of the pack is absent or distant from the rest. This amazing canine is a devoted part of our family, and somehow manages to take care of all of us. It’s no wonder that she flew through her training to become a fully qualified Mental Health Assistance Dog for Paul. Her instincts, though sometimes conflicted around water, as we’ve described, become solely focussed on Paul when he needs her – vest or no vest. Her dedication to Paul impresses all who meet her.

Luna enhances and enriches our lives, and allows Paul to again live a Life. One he no longer wanted to be part of 18 months ago. For that alone, we can never thank her enough.

We love you Luna!

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