Freddy, Assistant Morale Manager
Assistant Morale Manager Freddy was recruited to Home Instead Senior Care® from his native state of Vermont, for a job placement that did not include an interview. Not that Freddy plans to use them anytime soon, but he likes to point out he has a lot of Alaska Airline miles (3,200) to his credit.
Recalling his memorable flight, Freddy said: "I'm apparently too big to fit under the seat, so I flew with the other big dogs – I felt very special to be with the big dogs and not stuck under some seat like the little dogs."
Freddy concedes that he learned everything he knows from the first Lead Morale Manager: Gunner. "As Gunner was getting older, the Home Instead Senior Care franchise owner Stacee Frost Kleinsmith, who is also known as 'my mom,' wanted a young Belgian Tervuren to watch and learn from 'The Morale Department Expert' and all-around good dog," Freddy said.
Among his job responsibilities, Freddy lists "being happy to meet and greet people, and also read their minds and discern whether they want to play or if they just want to pet me." Freddy notes he is big enough that when he stands next to people, "They can just reach down to pet me." Freddy explained that his job is to make people happy all day long. "That makes a dog feel pretty darn good," Freddy said.
Everyone should know that in addition to Gunner's tutelage, Freddy will go to school. "First," Freddy explained, "there is puppy obedience. You know they say you learn everything you ever need to know in kindergarten, right?" These are the bare necessities:
- "Share your toys;
- "Don't bite;
- "Only chew on the toys that 'Mom' gives you and don't chew the furniture;
- "Big dogs go to the bathroom outside;
- "Give kisses if you've messed up;
- "Be gentle when someone gives you cookies or treats;
- "Take a nap every day;
- "When you go out into the world, stick close by your friends;
- "Remember your key one-word commands: Sit. Stay. Wait. Down. Off. Here."
Freddy added: " 'Mom' believes in higher education, but she says we will just wait and see where my interests and talents lead me – possibly to search-and-rescue work. Who knows? For now, let's just play."
Question-and-Answer With Assistant Morale Manager Freddy
Question: As a young Belgian Tervuren, how would you describe yourself?
Freddy: "They say I'm just a puppy. And it will take me a couple of years to settle into my own. At eight months old, I'm nearing my expected grown-up size. I'm pretty protective of my space, but I am learning how to love everybody. I just adore my 'mom,' and I am pretty much her shadow – wherever she is, that is where I want to be, too!"
Question: What are the perks of your job as assistant morale manager at Home Instead Senior Care®?
Freddy: "Well, I get to go to work every day with my big 'sister,' Tinky, and 'Mom' – but at work everyone calls her Ms. Stacee. Anyway – I'm meeting lots of people at the office, including CAREGivers. Sometimes children stop to say hello and other times there are clients, too. Mostly I like that they all OOOH and AAAH and think I am SO 'pretty.' They always say 'pretty' – I think I would much rather be called 'handsome.' I snoop around and sniff the garbage cans, and sometimes someone forgets Tinky and I are here and they throw away something that needs to be investigated. And naps – can't forget the naps. Tinky and I have very lucky jobs because we are the only ones in the office who get to take naps regularly as a perk. So yes, I am Second-in-Command of People Greeting, Garbage Snooping, and Nap Taking – I'm learning all I need to know by job training with my sis Tinky. Not a bad gig, eh?"
Question: What do you like to do away from the office?
Freddy: "Playing with my 'big sister' is super fun. Well, she's older than me, so she's my 'big' sister, but she is a Jack Russell terrier, so she's sort of my 'little' sister too, because she is much smaller than I am. When we go home, we play chase-all-around-the-yard – first I chase her and then she chases me and then we do it over again. We have a lot of energy, and we really like to run to get it all out. Then, at the end of the day, I like to crawl up in 'my mom's' lap and snuggle. She says I am too big, but I love being next to her all the time."