I'm not really for sure where to start. I have always had dogs growing up and know how much happiness they can bring to your life. We currently have 2 Golden Retrievers, a Miniature Goldendoodle, a Chocolate Lab and of course, my buddy, Bentley is also a Goldendoodle. This idea all started with a 17-year-old teenager in Arizona who has Leukemia. Anthony has been sick and in and out of the hospital for the past couple years. Therapy dogs visited Anthony's hospital, and his mom could see how huge this was to him. Nothing can bring a smile to his face like the therapy dogs. Since Anthony was spending so much time in the hospital and couldn't see his own dogs, a Facebook page was created: "Photo Doggies For Anthony". This was where people could send in pictures of their favorite pet to help to lift Anthony's spirits while he was sitting in the hospital. Thinking they would only get a few pictures, Anthony and his mom Kristin, were shocked when 1000's of pictures started coming in. Within a very short time, over 30,000 people were members of "Photo Doggies For Anthony", including my mom. The national media got a hold of the story. There were many news broadcasts, including CBS with Gayle King, released segments about Anthony's story. This was over 2 years ago when Anthony had first been diagnosed with his cancer. Of course, Anthony has had his ups and downs over this time.
One night, my mom and I were talking about how terrible it would be to be 17 and have to deal with this horrible disease. With me also being 17, it really hit home. I couldn't imagine what he was going through or had been through. I wanted to help but didn't know how. I love to draw and do a lot of graphic design, so with my mom and dad owning a screenprinting business, I thought, "Why not design a shirt up in Anthony's honor?" So, my mom ran the idea by Anthony's mom, Kristin, and she thought it was an awesome idea. Anthony loves to skateboard, so he and I designed a shirt. The design included him and therapy dogs riding skateboards. In spring 2016, we did a fundraiser for the shirts, and with the proceeds, Anthony was able to hand out a stuffed animal with his shirt design to sick children at this clinic. We just wanted to make the children who were struggling with life smile and let them know that someone was thinking of them.
After doing the fundraiser for Anthony, I wanted to do more to help kids across the nation. I had just gotten my new puppy, Bentley, and the idea came to me, "Why not create a design of Bentley and help dogs and children nationwide?" So, I went to my sketchpad and started drawing. Then the name; "What do I name it?" I probably came up with 100 names, but nothing really seemed to fit until "BentleyPaws" was mentioned. I thought, "That's it! 'BentleyPaws!'" Bentley and therapy dogs are going to make a difference in kids' lives, one paw at a time. Our goal is to take a portion of the proceeds we make and have custom stuffed animal created of Bentley wearing a BentleyPaws shirts, along with a message letting them know we are thinking of them. We have to order several hundred stuffed animals at a time and understand that it will take us awhile to reach our goal to have the stuffed animals made. We are hoping to do this in 2020. Until then we will be donating a portion of our proceeds to animal shelters as they are always in need.