Comfort dogs bring love, compassion to Newtown survivors

While family and friends of the victims of after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School are struggling to cope, some four-legged friends have arrived to help ease the pain.

Lutheran Church Charities Comfort-Dog Initiative of Addison, Illinois sent ten golden retrievers over 800 miles to bring comfort to the people of Newtown, Connecticut. The comfort dogs visited the memorial site on Sunday to bring a few smiles, comfort and a start in the healing process.

The organization brought the therapeutic canines, Chewy, Ruthie, Abbi, Prince, Luther, Maggie, Hanna, Barney, and Shanni, to offer love and a calming presence. The dogs have also visited survivors of other tragedies such as the Joplin tornado and superstorm Sandy, giving children and adults a reason to smile after disasters and crisis.

“Dogs are non-judgmental,” said Tim Hetzner, president of the organization. “They are loving. They are accepting of anyone. It creates the atmosphere for people to share.”


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About Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek has been a political consultant handling public affairs, political campaigns and PAC management for nearly 20 years.

  • kathy lefevre

    I had not heard specifically of "Compassion Dogs" before this story. What a wonderful use of our best friend! Dogs really are able to transcend all of the characteristics that people often use to seperate themselves from each other. We know petting dogs lowers blood pressure and levels of stress hormones. I just loved this story and plan to explore this concept more when I retire from Monday through Friday life.