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Updated: May 15

Chelan County's sheriff's office proudly introduced its first therapy dog this week. Roux, an 8-week-old Australian Labradoodle, was donated by former Chelan County deputy Brent Patterson and his wife, Tori, owners of Mountain Home Doodles, an Australian Labradoodle breeder in Cashmere.

The canine's purpose is to assist first responders and staff in coping with traumatic events and improving overall wellness within the organization, according to sheriff's officials. Studies have shown that therapy animals can lower blood pressure, decrease anxiety, improve mood, and foster feelings of support in humans. Interacting with therapy dogs releases oxytocin, lowers stress and anxiety, increases serotonin, improves mood, and reduces symptoms of post-traumatic stress.

Training for Roux is being provided by the Wenatchee Kennel Club. With the arrival of Roux, the Chelan County Sheriff's Office looks forward to benefiting from its comforting presence and therapeutic effects.

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