The Bright & Beautiful Therapy Dogs, Inc.

Kirsten Rees Santiago Memorial Fund


Kirsten Santiago was one of our very finest handlers, and we lost her in the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Dedicated, sensitive, and selfless she went about her duties with her special therapy dog, Lady Sailor, and knew she was making an important difference in other people’s lives. Her family and employer, Insurance Overload Systems, recognized her love of helping others and bestowed the proceeds of her memorial fund to The Bright & Beautiful Therapy Dogs, Inc. We, therefore, have founded and administrate this fund in her name. She would have liked that.

 

The Kirsten R. Santiago Memorial Fund has been established to help our handlers attain the finest care for our therapy dogs should they become sick or injured, so they can return to work quickly and comfortably. Applications may be submitted directly to The Bright & Beautiful Therapy Dogs, Inc.

 

Funding Guidelines:

The Kirsten R. Santiago Memorial Fund will provide monetary assistance toward a major veterinary event for working Bright & Beautiful Therapy dogs in good standing. Because the resources of this fund are limited, and the availability of monies is dependent on the amount on hand, we cannot guarantee coverage of expenses for any specific therapy dog at a particular time. Thus each application will be evaluated individually. These guidelines will be followed to determine if the dog is eligible for assistance from the Kirsten R. Santiago Memorial Fund.

 

  • All applications must be submitted no later than 30 days after the expense has been incurred.
  • The illness or injury must be an emergency or catastrophe, and treatment must be a recognized form of veterinary medicine.
  • The financial burden must be real, and over $500.
  • We will assist one therapy dog family for a mximum of $1,500.
  • The remuneration will only be made to a recognized veterinarian or facility.
  • A working Bright & Beautiful Therapy dogs in good standing is:

A working therapy dog is a dog that has been working continuously (an average of twice a month) at a recognized facility for at least six months prior to its illness. These dogs must be current on their registration and guidelines requirements. Dogs that are test dogs or Group Captain’s dogs that work regularly at tests and other events are also considered in very good standing. All dogs must be currently registered and up to date on all veterinarian inoculations.

  • No other funds or insurance are available to aid the handler/dog team.
  • A licensed veterinarian has assessed the injuries and ailments, and has given the dog a good prognosis for quality of life and can return to therapy dog work once treated.
  • The dog is not terminally ill.
  • There will be no age limit – as long as quality of life is maintained.

In many cases the decision whether or not to help pay the medical bills for our therapy dogs is clear; in other situations our choices are more difficult. For the decision making process to be as fair and equitable as possible, all applications will be evaluated by our Board of Directors. Our Veterinary Advisory Board will be contacted as necessary to assist us in making the funding decisions.