Canine Companions Facility Dog Squid to Appear on “Dolly Parton’s Pet Gala,” Airing Feb. 21 

Two photos presented side by side. On the left, a black Labrador service dog wearing a blue Canine Companions vest stands proudly on a pink carpet. On the right, a woman in an elegant teal gown smiles, standing next to the same dog, amidst a backdrop of pink and black balloons at a formal event.
Squid and his handler, Leslie Grissim, facility dog coordinator, appear on the red carpet in advance of “Dolly Parton’s Pet Gala.”

 Canine Companions Facility Dog Squid and his handler, Leslie Grissim, MA, facility dog coordinator at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt University, are set to make their red-carpet debut on Wednesday, February 21, 2024. 

The duo will be featured as part of “Dolly Parton’s Pet Gala,” airing on CBS at 9 – 11 p.m. ET/PT. The variety special will include musical performances by Dolly Parton, Carly Pearce, Lainey Wilson and more, along with a one-of-a-kind furry runway. 

During the gala, stylish pups will work the runway wearing the latest doggy fashion trends and Dolly’s iconic looks from The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Glastonbury and more. Along with Squid, the special highlights several standout social super pups, including Doug the Pug, Pooch of NYC, Noodles the Poodle and Tika the Iggy.  

And, there may be even more appearances of our amazing Canine Companions teams and their service dogs, so tune in! 

Squid and Leslie’s segment, which also features several of the hospital’s patients, showcases the work he does as a facility dog at Monroe Carell. Squid began working at Monroe Carell in February 2020. 

Update Feb 22, 2024: To view the full show, click here! Skip to the 19 minute mark to watch our stories.



Courtesy: Vanderbilt University Medical Center 

Photo credit: Paramount+