Jet Comes Home

Jet Comes Home

Sarah Chimenti, Staff Writer

Jet may have taken off into a life of service, but he ended up landing right where he belongs: home. 

If you are a student at Farmingdale High School, you must know about our beloved furry friend Jet. But did you know that his service dog training story didn’t end as it usually would? 

Jet was a service dog in training at Farmingdale High School with Mr. Falcones. Jet was going to be a service animal, but unfortunately that did not work out. Doctors did medical evaluations on him; they checked his eyes, skin, ears, and teeth, and they checked all of his joints to make sure that he was a perfectly healthy dog so he could effectively provide for a person with a disability. However, while examining Jet, they discovered that he has elbow dysplasia in his left elbow. Elbow dysplasia is where the cartilage in the elbow does not form correctly. This means that he is going to have arthritis when he gets older, so he was medically released. Mr. Falcones stepped up and adopted him a month later. Mr. Falcones shares his thoughts on getting Jet back: “Initially I was in shock because we have all met Jet, we all saw him and I thought he was perfectly healthy. I didn’t think he was going to run into any medical problems, but then I was very excited because I knew I would be able to adopt him. I was also kind of disappointed because I had put so much time and effort into training him and in my heart I already had let him go. I really wanted him to do something incredible for someone else by being a service dog. Overall I felt really blessed that I was able to train this dog to potentially be a service dog, but unfortunately, it couldn’t be. But now he gets to be mine forever, so I am happy.” Jet now gets to stay with Mr. Falcones in his home. 

Jet is now a stay-at-home dog, so he can be found at home relaxing. Since Jet would always come to school with Mr. Falcones, at first Jet would get confused as he left for work. Now Jet is used to it and Mr. Falcones says, “Jet has gotten used to being alone at the house; now when I leave to come to work everyday he lays in the bed and looks at me and is like ‘see you later sucker!’ He is very happy at home. He sleeps all day, he gets all the treats, and all the snuggles. Jet was not allowed on the couch before when he was a service dog, but now he’s allowed on the couch, so he’s just like a normal dog. He is an everyday dog but he is still special to me.” 

The future plan for Jet is for him to potentially become a therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that is trained to provide affection, comfort, and support to people, often in settings such as hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, libraries, hospices, or disaster areas. Mr. Falcones wants to get him to become a therapy dog so he can come back to school. Mr. Falcones shares his thoughts about Jet becoming a therapy dog in the near future: “I am going to try to get him certified as a therapy dog. I can bring him to work with me and he will be hanging out right here.” Mr. Falcones explains the purpose for a therapy dog, saying, “A therapy dog can only go to the place where he’s going to be conducting this therapy, so Jet will only be able to go to Farmingdale High School, so I can’t bring him to the supermarket and the movies or restaurants.” Therapy dogs can be essential in schools because they can help calm students down and soothe them in times of stress or emotional strain. Moving forward, Jet’s future is looking bright and we are hoping to see him at FHS again soon.