I'm a 3-lb registered therapy dog, author & philanthropist.
I also give pretty good high-fives.
Welcome to the Norberthood! Here is my story:
In 2009, when I was 4 months old, my Mom Julie Steines (formerly Julie Freyermuth) adopted me through PetFinder.com. I was not in a shelter or rescue but I needed a special kind of home due to my tiny size. I am the first and only dog Julie has ever owned. Get to know Julie here on her Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorjulie/
When Julie adopted me, she was told I was a Chihuahua and Yorkshire Terrier mix. Two years later, a DNA test showed I was a Chihuahua, Cairn Terrier and Lhasa Apso mix. In 2019, a new DNA test showed I am a Chihuahua and Small Poodle mix. I think I am one-of-a-kind! I was the only puppy in my litter. When I was born, my fur was dark brown and slowly changed color over the first two years of my life.
My name Norbert was inspired by the dragon from the Harry Potter book series, the American mathematician & philosopher Norbert Wiener and Saint Norbert of Xanten.
Julie knew I was a special dog from the day she met me. She noticed I had a gift for making people smile just by being myself.
And so began our happily ever after. . . . . .
One day, when I was still a puppy, my Mom and I went into an eyeglass store in Boston. The woman working at the store saw me and said I would make a wonderful therapy dog.
At the time, Julie didn't even know what a therapy dog was or did. After some research, we learned that therapy animals are trained and registered to provide love and comfort to people in need at places like hospitals, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and more.
Julie trained me herself; and at age one, I passed the tests to become a registered therapy dog. I currently volunteer at Children's Hospital Los Angeles and by special request. Many of my tricks are uniquely named which always make the people I visit smile (see Favorite Tricks).
My Mom had a lifelong dream to write a children's book with her mother, Dr. Virginia Freyermuth, as the Illustrator. My story of becoming a therapy dog and finding my special gift was perfect to translate into a beautiful picture book. The book, Norbert: What Can Little Me Do? went on to win 9 prestigious book awards and became the first in a series.
My best-selling photo book Norbert's Little Lessons for a BIG Life is filled with adorable imagery and inspiration. It is available at select book stores and on Amazon. My 2020 Wall Calendar is available on Amazon, HERE.
My Norbert Mini-Plush Toy is once again sold-out. I will make an announcement should they be re-stocked.
Everyone who helps me spread smiles is part of the Norberthood - a group of nearly 2 million people and growing. Let's spread smiles together!
Age – 10
Breed – Mixed
Height – 7"
Weight – 3-ish lbs.
Color – cream & grey
Home – Los Angeles, CA
Zen (lie down)
PO Box 661443
Los Angeles, CA 90066
Journalist & TV personality,
"You don't have to be big, to make a BIG difference in the world." - Norbert
"His cuteness is transcendent" - Time.com
P.S. I also helped write a real-life Cinderella story for Julie.
"...This little 3-pound mixed breed dog is changing the world, one smile at a time. And, he has changed Julie’s life forever by being her partner in spreading smiles and inspiring kindness, and by being the conduit connecting her with her soulmate, Mark. She told me he is “the love of my life." So, as she said with pride and love, “Norbert changed my life in every way imaginable.” This is indeed a true fairy tale. For Julie, “it’s magical.” Article by: Francine Brokaw