Canine Assistants in Milton has said goodbye to one of its best known spokesdogs, Croix, who passed away at the end of December.

Croix, a golden retriever, began working with the nonprofit as a spokesdog in 2008 and was active in the community until his passing at age 12.

“Once Croix and I started working together he proved that this spokesdog job was his mission and he loved it,” said his handler Sue Harrison.

“He helped to raise awareness about service dogs and Canine Assistants where he was born and raised. From presentations at schools, pre-schools and colleges, to businesses, clubs and hospitals where he was a volunteer for the Brain Injury Peer Visitor Association with my daughter and me, he was a super star—always with a big smile on his face for patients, families and staff and he was loved by all.”

Croix was 2-years-old when he joined Harrison as a spokesdog, where he worked alongside her older Canine Assistants spokesdog Caesar.

“Caesar was his mentor, showing him the ropes, so to say. Croix was a fast learner and loved his new job,” Harrison said. “After being together as brothers for two years, Caesar passed away and Croix mourned for and missed him as we did.”

In his role as a spokesdog, Croix was a regular around north Fulton and was even deemed a congregant at the synagogue Harrison attends with her husband Arnie.

“He constantly amazed Arnie and I as we watched him brings smiles to the faces of people in all situations, doctor offices, restaurants, stores—at the same time helping to bring awareness about how service dogs assist children and adults with disabilities,” she said. “I am eternally grateful to Canine Assistants for the incredible opportunity to have had these wonderful animals in our home and in our lives.”

Harrison began as a volunteer with Canine Assistants almost 25 years ago and is currently on staff helping to raise awareness on a national level.

“It has been a life-changing experience for me and for everyone who has had the opportunity to meet these incredible dogs,” she said. “Recipients do not pay for our dogs; we rely on the generosity of private, individual and corporate funding to allow future recipients to have the opportunity to improve their lives by way of our amazing dogs.”

To make a donation to Canine Assistants in Croix’s name, visit www.canineassistants.org and click on Donate, In Memory of; and fill out the request in memory of Croix.

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