Merlot helped me tonight by just being there. For that brief moment I could just look at how peaceful she was. This beautiful dog assists simply by laying down next to the victims as they share their story.
Most of the time, however, is spent at the Regina Children’s Justice Centre.
Those who have been abused, sexually, physically or through neglect come to share their stories.
Merlot helps victims of all ages, but for children specifically it can be a very scary time.
Dog owners know the joy of coming home to a wagging tale, this is now a feeling that victims can share.
For youth in the justice centre, interviews with officers can be very intimidating,
“As an interviewer, you can’t show emotion, you can’t take sides,” Sgt. Froh said.
But that’s where Merlot comes in. Flashing puppy dog eyes that set children at ease without saying a word.
“If you’re talking to the dog and not having to look at the interviewer, it’s just a comforting aid for the child.”
Studies have proven that dogs help to decrease blood pressure and anxiety.
Erica Schenk is a Victim Services Responder and has only praise for Merlot’s work.
“When [victims] know Merlot is there for a support, they’re more willing to move forward with an investigation. #rps #cityofregina #dogs#pads#rip#respect#ems#rfps