Katie the Comfort Dog returns from Parkland
After some well deserved time off Katie the comfort dog is getting back to work.
She recently returned from serving in Parkland Florida after last month’s tragic shooting.
Katie went as part of Lutheran Church Charities K9 Comfort Dog team.
They were there as staff and students returned to Stoneman Douglas High School for the first time since the shooting.
"We had ten dogs lined in a hallway as the teachers came walking in you could just see the relief in their face when they walked down the hall and saw us there to greet them," Paula Price.
On the first day of classes Katie was placed in a room where two students had been killed.
Deb Heuer, one of Katie’s handlers, said having her there made all the difference, "Petting the dog just released some of that emotion and they felt safe."
While Katie was there to provide comfort there were a few lighter moments to be had.
The tennis coach invited all the handlers and their dogs to practice and everyone got to have a little fun.
"To see on that video and hear the giggling and the laughing I mean that’s the first time they did that in two weeks. A lot of the kids, staff, adults would say this is the first time I’ve felt I could smile or laugh," said Dawn Gilfry another one of Katie’s handlers.
Bringing a smile and a few moments of peace to a hurting community is Katie’s biggest mission.
After leaving and reflecting on their trip, Gilfry said they learned just how strong the human spirit is.
"Good always wins after evil happens."
If you would like to learn more about Katie the comfort dog or her ministry click here.