Comfort Dogs Arrive in Uvalde to Offer Support After School Shooting
Dogs are always there for us, even in times of great tragedies, providing comfort and being a consolation when everything else fails. Even more so when they are taught specifically to provide emotional support, like the Golden Retrievers that are trained by Lutheran Church Charities K-9 Ministries. Less than a day after the senseless massacre in Uvalde, where 21 people lost their lives to a mass shooting, comfort dogs are being brought to help the first responders and survivors cope with the trauma. LCC K-9 Ministries team of Golden Retrievers has 8 dogs in Uvalde, aged from 3 to 9 years, and their main job is to connect with people and let them express their feelings in a safe, guarded space between a person and a dog – offering consolation than only a pure-hearted being such as a dog can offer. The comfort dogs will also be present at the mass vigil and available to families of victims and survivors, first respondents, and the people who have survived the shooting.
The team of dogs comes from all over the country – Austin, Texas; Wichita Falls, Texas; Houston, Texas; Plano, Texas; Kingfisher, Oklahoma; and Fort Collins, Colorado – and is accompanied by the Lutheran Church Charities K-9 Ministries’ coordinators, who say that while they are there for the people and share in their sorrow, it’s the dogs that are the ones making the real difference. And it’s not their first time, either: these comfort dogs have been there for the survivors of many tragedies in the past, including Sandy Hook, and they’ve seen firsthand how much they can help. It doesn’t surprise, then, that the initiative is always growing: they started with four dogs in 2008, and now they have more than 130 dogs across 27 states, always ready to provide comfort where it’s the most needed.
And to make the matter even more touching, Lutheran Church Charities K-9 Ministries never charge for the invaluable service their dogs provide to survivors. They are funded by donations that cover the travel expenses for the dogs and go all over the country to help those that need it the most.
A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.
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