First Dog Jog Fundraiser Raises $2,000 to Purchase Therapy Dog

First Dog Jog Fundraiser Raises $2,000 to Purchase Therapy Dog
(L-R) Sara Cooksley, Becky Pearson, Nathan King, and chocolate lab Raisin during the April 3 Dog Jog Fundraiser in Broken Bow.

BROKEN BOW—Puppies on parade! Approximately $2,000 was raised on April 3 during the Dog Jog/Walk Fundraiser hosted by Pearson Physical Therapy at Melham Park.

Pups of all sizes showed up with their owners to walk/jog around the park as a special fundraiser to benefit local resident Nathan King and the purchase of his new therapy dog, Raisin.

Dogs and their owners preparing for the dog jog/walk on Sunday afternoon at Melham Park

Raisin is an 8-month-old chocolate lab who is trained as a service dog to help Nathan. In 2015, Nathan was working in the oils fields in Oklahoma and was involved in a rollover semi-truck accident. He sustained a back injury and has since suffered PTSD along with a sensory processing disorder.

His previous service dog, a French Mastiff named Hooch, recently passed away from cancer but played a vital role in restoring Nathan’s confidence.

“[I’m] a little overwhelmed but just really emotionally touched by so many people that I don’t know coming together to help someone in the community,” Nathan King told KCNI/KBBN.

Nathan told KCNI/KBBN he was very thankful on Sunday afternoon with the turnout of dogs and their owners to support the fundraiser to purchase Raisin. Nathan thanked Pearson Physical Therapy, Becky Pearson, and Sara Cooksley for planning the event in just a couple of weeks.

“I feel like it’s God’s timing, if you’re a believer in God,” Becky Pearson said. “With Raisin being available, starting with her therapy training, it’s amazing,” Nathan added.

Nathan King said the generosity shown helps restore his faith in humanity. Both he and Becky Pearson hope to host similar dog jog events in the future to help raise money for other people or veterans in the community who could benefit from service dogs.

“Since my wreck I’m really untrusting, it’s really hard and this just helps,” Nathan King said. “We’ve had just such a great response from this community and surrounding communities so it’s wonderful to see. We know we live in–I think–one of the best places on earth and it shows it with this today,” Becky Pearson said.

During the event, Raisin’s grandma—a chocolate lab named Bridget—completed the dog jog course the fastest with a time of 13 minutes!