Shortly after a terrible mass shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada, which killed at least 58 people and injured more than 500 people, a pack of Golden Retrievers appeared in the city to do their part.
The LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs are a furry crew affiliated with Lutheran Church Charities, a non-profit foundation in Northbrook, Illinois. The group has trained therapy dogs in 23 states. The dogs work in their local community in places like hospitals and nursing homes and always travel to a place of crisis like the Las Vegas Massacre.
The dogs offer emotional support to grieving people's and can help victims open up after a tragedy. People can pet them, talk to them, and use them as a furry shoulder to cry on.
“Dogs show unconditional love,” said Tim Hetzner, president of the Lutheran Church Charities who found the K-9 program in 2008. “They are good listeners, they are confidential, and they don’t take notes.”
Hetzner pointed out that the dogs never go anywhere they are not invited and that the organization offers a comletely free service charge. In this case, there was already at least one dog in Las Vegas when the massacre took place, but more were soon to follow.
“We're trying to put boots and paws on the ground within 24 hours of an invitation,” he said. Earlier on Tuesday, there were 19 comfort dogs in the city, with retrievers traveling from Illinois, Nebraska, Colorado, Arizona, California, and Missouri.