There were many who tragically lost their lives during the Las Vegas massacre and many others who sustained serious physical injuries. However, many others sustained serious trauma that is not visible after going through such a horrific experience. This is where a team of “Comfort Dogs” has arrived in the area to help those dealing with such a traumatic experience. These dogs arrived from all areas of the country to visit survivors in hospitals and even paid visits to police and fire stations to comfort first responders, too.
The dogs come from K-9 Comfort Dog Ministries, based in the Lutheran Church Charities located in Davenport, Iowa. The group trains golden retrievers that are dispatched after any sort of disaster or traumatic event. These dogs are trained to be there for those who need them most, offering a shoulder to cry on or even just someone to listen without judgment. Many report that these dogs are just what survivors need: someone to listen to their thoughts and fears and love them no matter what they have been through. Dogs have a great sense for when there is hurt or sorrow, and respond in a way only they can, through laying in their laps and offering some love.
These dogs are naturally calm, but are trained to be even more so while they are on the job. This helps people feel comfort by expressing their emotions and having a dog nearby to help. Many in Las Vegas found great comfort in the dogs recently as they work to heal from their experience. The dogs have been busy lately: they responded to Texas in the wake of Hurricane Harvey and to Florida after Hurricane Irma. Wherever they are needed, the merry group of golden retrievers go, offering unconditional love, support, and comfort to everyone they meet.