Meet Faber, San Francisco’s First Courthouse Therapy Dog

Christina Peden
by Christina Peden

What a great idea! We think this program should be instituted everywhere.

We all know there’s nothing like the love of a dog to help soothe the stress of a busy day.

Now, one courthouse in San Francisco is taking that knowledge a step further: they’ve brought in a professional therapy dog named Faber to help comfort witnesses, victims and children.

Faber is a Golden Retriever and the first courthouse dog in the city. It’s easy to see how effective a therapy dog would be in this setting; even if you’ve never been a part of court hearing, we can all imagine how nerve-racking it would be. Think about how much that stress could be reduced with a pooch by your side!

While Faber isn’t allowed into the courtroom just yet, he is being used to help comfort witnesses and victims during forensic interviews and areas of other criminal investigations.

Staff members at the San Francisco District Attorney’s office are already singing Faber’s praises.

They know how intimidating the justice system can be and say Faber gives people the calm and comfort they need, which helps them better recall events surrounding a crime. In turn, this gives investigators more accurate information to act on in a trial or investigation, so it’s a win-win — not only is Faber a soothing presence, but he’s also helping to fight crime in his own little way.

The golden retriever came to the courthouse through a non-profit called Canine Companions for Independence, which also has a breeding program. The dogs are trained and socialized by volunteers for a year-and-a-half before being put on active duty, and the volunteers love knowing these precious pooches will be helping those in need.

In the future, the San Francisco DA would love to see Faber in the courtroom when witnesses testify. For now, he’ll be keeping people company in interview rooms and courthouse hallways.

To see Faber in action, check out the video below:

[Source: ABC News Chicago]

Christina Peden
Christina Peden

Christina Peden is a lifelong animal lover and avid wordsmith. She lives in Toronto with her boyfriend Ryan where they are proud pet parents to puppy, Matilda and cat, Oscar. In her spare time, she can be found enjoying Toronto, Canada's all-too-short patio season, taking advantage of the city's numerous parks or curled up with a good book.

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