Something for the weekend: Being a bobby on the beat can be hard at the best of times, but policing during the pandemic brings its own unique and stressful challenges – from breaking up illegal lockdown parties and fining hill walkers for carrying cups of coffee to being spat at by offenders – it’s a tough life.
But those stresses are being alleviated for the lucky officers of the Sussex Police Force who can spend some downtime with a host of adorably cute wellbeing dogs.
The pawfect remedy is courtesy of the Wellbeing and Trauma Support Dogs Project, initiated by the National Police Welling Service. It aims to help de-stress police officers and relax tense or agitated arrestees.
The friendly pack includes Milo, who is owned by chief inspector Di Lewis and often found in the Eastbourne police station; PC Daren Buck’s dog Stanley, who hangs out at East Sussex police stations; and Beau, a PTSD assistance dog in training who is often seen around Sussex Police headquarters in Lewes.
After an appearance on Twitter, in which Milo helped educate the public on the many incorrect and the correct way to wear a Covid-19 (Coronavirus) face mask, the cuddly pack have gone viral, even starring on national television news this month.
Sergeant Garry Botterill, who is leading on the new project, said: “This project is a fantastic way to help encourage officers to open up, engage and speak about their mental health and wellbeing.
“Dogs have a friendly, calming influence and people are noticeably more relaxed and comfortable in their presence.”
However offenders are warned not to expect the same response from trained police dogs.
Here at Employee Benefits, we love the idea of wellbeing dogs being on hand to help us relax after a ruff day.