Archie The Therapy Dog Needs A Little Help Of His Own


Last month, we shared a story about Archie, a Newfoundland, who is an inspiration, motivation, and just a good friend to the children at Casa Pacifica, a Ventura County oasis for abused, neglected and emotionally disturbed children. 165 pound Archie has been working there as a therapy dog for the past two years and has truly been making a difference.

Archibald Razzmatazz, otherwise known as Archie, brings smiles and laughter to all the children at Casa Pacifica and provides them with someone to lean on or hug. Sometimes children just sit and read to Archie, others share their frustrations with him, and all of the children find a true friend in Archie.

Vicky Murphy, director of operations and development for Casa Pacifica, first brought Archie to the center after researching and finding that Newfoundlands are some of the best therapy dogs. Archie lives with Murphy in her home.

Archie walks around the campus spreading his warmth and love around. For some children, Archie is the one friend they can open up to and trust.

One of the Casa Pacifica children, Solidad usually doesn’t speak, but with Archie, she opens up and talks to him. She tells him that he’s a good boy and snuggles up to him and strokes his fur. She said he is sweet, calm and likes kids.

“For some kids, it’s hard for them to touch or be touched, but with Archie, they hug him and lay on him,” Murphy said. “They say, ‘He loves me so much.’ He makes them all feel incredibly loved.”

Now, this therapy dog needs a little extra care and attention for himself. He injured a back leg while playing with Murphy’s other dog, a Shih Tzu/poodle mix.

He went through a $5,800 surgery for his injury, which is comparable to an ACL injury in a person. Now, he needs another surgery from the stress of shifting his weight to the other leg while he healed.

Casa Pacifica has no resources to care for Archie, whose purchase price and food, as well as the first surgery, have been paid for with donations.

Even though Archie is in some pain and walks slower these days, he keeps on working and being a friend and bringing smiles to everyone’s faces.

He has even helped a teenage boy concentrate while taking tests at school. This teenager became an expert in caring for Archie and once said the dog was his only friend.

His self-confidence drastically increased because of all the knowledge he learned about dogs. He simply looks forward to the time that he is able to spend with Archie.

One of the clinicians at Casa Pacifica said children relate well to Archie because of his “unconditional positive regard for people.”

Archie has gone through obedience training and earned the AKC’s Canine Good Citizenship certificate. After his surgery, he will be trained as a water rescue dog to handle an emergency at the pool.

For more information about Archie and how to help, you can visit his website.

UPDATE: Casa Pacifica has received the $5,000 in donations needed for Archie’s surgery.

Source: Ventura County Star

7 Responses to “Archie The Therapy Dog Needs A Little Help Of His Own”

  1. Lynn says:

    How can we help Archie in Ventura County, CA?

    Having had ACL surgery myself, my orthopedic surgeon credits using IMMEDIATELY post surgery a continuous motion machine for a lot of the success. That wouldn’t be feasible for a dog. But how about a therapeutic pool? Will that help? If so, is there one close by to Archie? Or maybe there’s a kindly pet lover with a heated pool………

    The picture doesn’t do him justice [black never does!] but I saw a clip on television last night. He is gorgeous - in body AND spirit.

  2. Lynne says:

    The link to help him out is here:

  3. Moonbeams says:

    I donated to help Archie. My little Angie that just passed away and is now over the Rainbow Bridge had to have back leg knee surgery to walk - it cost about $1,200.00 and it redeemed her life. Not only that but she was sold to me as a pit bull from the SPCA (really she was a Dogo Argentina) and someone had taken sissors and cut her ear flaps off way down. She was just the best little girl dog at 50 lb and the love of our lives. Of course I donated in Angie’s memory.

  4. Stefani says:

    I think it’s great that people are pitching in to help Archie. However, Murphy and/or Casa Pacifica, should take this as an opportunity to learn a lesson — they have a responsibility to NOT ONLY care for their kids with Archie’s help, BUT ALSO make sure they put some money aside for Archie’s care too.

    I know vet expenses can get tough on a non-profit salary when this kind of injury occurs, but since Archie is now a service dog there, it seems to me that Casa Pacifica should put a line item in their budget for Archie’s future veterinary expenses, so he won’t be put in the situation of begging or going without medical care in the future.

    After all, his entire existence is to help others. Resources should be set aside for him when he needs help, too.

    The Toonces Project
    “Is Your Pet Safe at the Vet?”

  5. nora says:

    Stefani, I must mention that I have a Toonces also. She is my 16 year old female cat. I found her almost starved to death in the woods and abandoned as a kitten and her eyes had not even changed from blue yet, so she had to be younger than 6 weeks old. That was so many years ago. I want to say I am very sorry about your beautiful Toonces. Getting back to Archie, he is a Champion of Dogs and anything to help him should be done.

  6. Lynn says:

    Agree 100% about veterinary care being a line item in Casa Pacifica’s budget.

    Thanks for link, Lynne.

  7. Archie The Therapy Dog Recovering From His Surgery | Itchmo: News For Dogs & Cats says:

    […] this therapy dog recently needed help of his own. He needed an expensive surgery from an injury sustained while playing with another dog. But the […]

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