A Christian charity from near Chicago has sent “comfort dogs” to Orlando, where 49 people were shot and killed by 29-year-old Omar Mateen at a gay nightclub Sunday.
According to the Lutheran Church Charities’ K-9 Comfort Dogs Facebook page, the dogs traveled to Orlando on Monday to begin soothing first responders, as well as the dozens of people who are receiving care after being shot.
“Your blood pressure goes down when you pet a dog, you feel more comfortable, and people end up talking,” Tim Hetzner, president of the LCC K-9 Comfort Dogs, told ABC News. “They’re good listeners, they’re non-judgmental, they’re confidential.”
Comfort dogs from the Northbrook, Ill., group also comforted victims after the Sandy Hook shooting and the Boston Marathon bombing.
LLC K-9 Comfort Dogs provides care for free, but the group is welcoming donations to help pay for transportation and lodging costs for the dogs and their caregivers.