Colo. FD swears in 2 service dogs to assist with mental health
MFR's Emergency Responder Service Dogs program aims to reduce stress to emergency responders
By News Staff
CENTENNIAL, Colo. — The South Metro Fire Rescue swore in two service dogs as members into their department to help first responders with PTSD.
The department conducted a small ceremony provided badges to two therapy dogs, Champ and Molson, who will work under the MFR's Emergency Responder Service Dogs program, Fox 31 and Channel 2 News reported.
SMFR posted the ceremony on Facebook, mentioning that the program's goal is to deliver immediate assistance to reduce stress to emergency responders.
"It really, truly solidified them as an employee and gives them the ability to be a part of the department the same that way I am or anybody else," Molson's handler, Paramedic Supervisor JP Piche said.
The program was created after a December 2017 tragedy when a gunman killed one deputy and injured another three deputies, as well as a police officer and two civilians.
Molson and Champ completed several months of training to become service dogs to help change first responder culture surrounding mental health. The service dogs are also dispatched to difficult calls to help first responders through tough times.