How Crisis Response Canines brings comfort to first responders and the communities they serve

Providing emotional support in the aftermath of critical incidents is the mission of this certified animal assistance organization


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Policing is stressful business. It’s been described as hours of sheer boredom interrupted by minutes of sheer terror. Unfortunately, the moments of terror where officers see horrific trauma and witness death carry a heavy toll.

Over the past few years, we have seen some relief in the forms of behavioral science, peer support groups and even officer wellness apps like Cordico. Experiencing relief in a tangible way is also important and that may be achieved through comfort animals. In public safety, there is a great organization called “Crisis Response Canines” whose mission is to provide emotional support to individuals, families, communities and first responders in the aftermath of critical incidents using therapy dogs.

In this episode of Policing Matters, host Jim Dudley speaks with John Hunt, co-founder and COO of Crisis Response Canines. John is a 27-year veteran of the New Jersey State Police where he achieved the rank of major. John was the Homeland Security – Special Operations Section Commanding Officer. He also served as the Deputy Director of the New Jersey Office of Emergency Management.

To learn more about Crisis Response Canines, visit the organization's website here and read this article by John Hunt on "CISM & canines: The bond that helps heal first responders."

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This episode of the Policing Matters Podcast is sponsored by Polco. Polco’s National Law Enforcement Survey provides a comprehensive, accurate and representative picture of resident opinions related to police services. Compare your results with other agencies around the nation. Align your priorities with community sentiment, build trust, and improve safety services. Visit info.polco.us to learn more.  

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