A MAN whose dogs offer care for elderly and vulnerable people has penned a series of books after the coronavirus outbreak left his business on the brink of closure.
Adrian Ashworth created Therapy Huskies after noticing that his wooly Siberian husky, Thunder, had been behaving different around his dad, Alan, around the time he was diagnosed with dementia.
With his three other dogs – Stormy, Thor, and Binny-Boo – Adrian travels to care homes and hospices to offer animal therapy and end-of-life care.
However, he has halted most of his services after the coronavirus outbreak made it impossible for Adrian and his dogs to visit care homes.
Despite this, Adrian has turned his attention to penning a series of children’s books, based around the adventures of Thunder the therapy dog.
“I first had the idea to write a book around four years ago,” said Adrian, of Pogmoor.
“Slowly the idea has developed from one book to a series of books, but I never had the time to write them.
“Now with lockdown I finally have the time and I thought there was no better time than to see if people would be interested in reading my writing.”
The books are aimed at children aged six to ten years old, and Adrian said that the feedback he has had so far has been positive.
“The kids seem to like them which is good,” he said. “We trialled the first book in schools and they went down really well.”
The books will be illustrated and follow Thunder as he explores Barnsley, and meets different characters along the way. Each book will focus on a moral that Adrian hopes the children will apply to their daily lives.
“At the end of the story the children are asked what they remember about the story, and of course they say Thunder but then they start remembering the moral of the story,” added Adrian.
“I hope that it can teach them something and help to make them better people.”
Adrian has planned ten books in the series, and is already part-way through writing the second book. He hopes that the books will provide a way to diversify the business after the lockdown measures are lifted.
“Unfortunately I don’t think the Therapy Huskies business will be going back to normal any time soon,” said Adrian.
“With care homes being the frontline for cases of the virus, I’m not sure how long we will be expected to stay away and if things will be able to go back to how they were before.
“Writing the books has allowed me to grow the business and to think of other ways Thunder can help people.”
The first book will be released next month. To order a copy visit the Therapy Huskies Facebook page.