The Ventura Fire Department Has "Hope"
Tuesday January 24, 2023
(Photo courtesy Ventura City Fire)
Firefighters and the people they serve are often faced with experiences that are emotionally traumatic.
The Ventura City Fire Department now has a therapy or comfort dog named "Hope".
She is a Labrador Retriever and Cavadoodle mix who began her puppy manners class in May of last year and has completed her American Kennel Club Canine Good Citizen training and certification.
"Hope" is on track to complete therapy training by the end of this year and then she will be fully certified to provide comfort to those in need.
This is a well educated "firehouse" dog.
She will help ease tension, lower post incident stress, anxiety levels and blood pressure as well as reduce feelings of loneliness among first-responders and the people they are helping.
"Hope" will also be involved in visiting other city departments and community events.
"Hope" was gifted to the department by VIP Dog Teams, a local non-profit.
Continuing costs for veterinary care, food, and equipment for "Hope" will be covered by the Ventura Fire Foundation.
When she is not on duty, "Hope" will be on call 24/7, but will be at home with her handler Heather Ellis as a family dog.