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New Facility Support Dog at Trail RCMP Victim Services

By Contributor
September 26th, 2023

Ireland is our new Facility Support Dog at RCMP Victim Services at the Trail and Greater District Detachment.

She is a black lab/golden retriever cross and was purpose-bred and specially chosen for her new working role. Ireland was raised and trained by the Lions Foundation of Canada Dog Guides. Lions Foundation of Canada Dog Guides operates under the highest training standards.

They are a founding member of the Canadian Association of Guide & Assistance Dog Schools and a fully accredited member of International Guide Dog Federation and Assistance Dogs International.

Facility Support Dogs (or also known as Justice Facility Dogs) assist Canadian professional agencies working with vulnerable people who have been impacted by trauma/tragedy or have been the victim of a crime.

Ireland is specifically trained to provide compassionate support, attuned presence, and a calming influence to those experiencing extreme emotional responses to certain events.

The impacts seen by professionals when deploying the dog are nothing short of amazing.

Facility Dogs provide cathartic and healing touch where human responders cannot, they may help reduce negative stress responses and increase positive neurochemical production in the body, they may reduce blood pressure and heart rate, they may help people to function better cognitively which would assist victims in their ability to effectively communicate and improve memory.

Some of the ways in which Victims Services will use Ireland are: crisis intervention (including on scene support and debriefings), client meetings, agency visits, forensic interviews, police statements, court accompaniment, and hospital examinations. Ireland and her handler will receive ongoing training and yearly assessments to ensure her clients are getting the best possible trauma informed, client centred care.

Along with providing direct support to clients, Ireland will be engaging in community events and public education. She is identified by her red vest.

Ireland is such an exciting addition to our team at Victim Services and we cant wait to see all the positive impacts she will make. Ireland would like to thank the Regional District of the Kootenay Boundary and Sgt. Mike Wicentowich for their support in bringing Ireland to our program.

Categories: CrimeEducation