I came across this story over the weekend and was crying reading about Karl. This is such a phenomenal idea and the part about the little girl on the witness stand rubbing Karl's fur with her toes made me sob out loud. Seriously the sweetest and most touching thing I've read in, I can't remember how long.
The K-9th Circuit Program
in Orange County pairs children with therapy dogs to help them become
more comfortable with the process of testifying in court. The dogs stay
with the child through depositions and other questionings and all the
way through to the trial, if necessary, and sometimes even after.
These children are in a difficult situation. Sometimes they’ve been
abused or neglected. Sometimes they’ve witnessed abuse or neglect — or
worse. It can be scary for these children to open up, especially to
strange adults. That’s why dogs like Karl are important.
Karl is not just a courthouse therapy dog, though. He also visits a
nearby hospice center, reads with children, and even has his own
coloring book, in which he teaches children the proper ways to approach
and care for dogs and other animals.
(photos and story kidnapped from dogster)