Many of you know Lucca, the VPD’s Victims Services Unit certified Justice Facility Dog. Since 2016, he’s been providing support to victims and witnesses of crime and trauma. Lucca’s calming presence promotes healthy communication and coping throughout difficult times for victims. Since being on the job, Lucca has had hundreds of unique contacts with clients and has assisted multiple victims and witnesses during their testimony related to homicides, sexual offences and other serious crimes.
As Lucca and his handler Sue Baker normally work directly with people, they have had to postpone working with clients for the time being. Additionally, Sue is taking extra care when she takes Lucca for walks or training as the coronavirus can live on Lucca’s fur and potentially infect others or Sue herself.
So what do Dogs With Jobs do when they can’t do their regular work?
Lucca is used to working out of the Victims Services Unit offices at VPD HQ, so is missing his work team, though his ears and tail perk up when he hears their voices on the twice daily team video calls.
Lucca and Sue have been doing a lot of training to keep Lucca’s skills and behaviour sharp and to make sure he’s ready to go when it is deemed safe to return to in-person client work. They have been enjoying our recent stretch of lovely spring weather (social distancing of course!) and like many of us, taking the time to be present in the moment, enjoy the little things and as best they can, stay connected to friends and family.
We wish Sue, Lucca and the entire Victim Services Team continued good health and can’t wait to see them when we’re all back in the office!
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