NEW BEDFORD — “It’s a swearing-in ceremony,” New Bedford police Lt. Scott Carola explained to the younger students, school staff and others gathered in the Roosevelt Middle School library Friday for the occasion. “Any police officer or anyone wearing a badge who comes to the department to serve others, we swear to them; they must swear.
“So it’s something we take pretty seriously….”
As New Bedford Police Chief Paul Oliveira and others prepared to deliver a few words leading up to the big moment, the soon-to-be appointee used those precious few minutes to catch a nap.
“Rosie’s not one for formality,” Carola joked.
Rosie—an approximately 12-week-old F1BB Goldendoodle—is the first four-legged member of the New Bedford Police Department to serve as a mercy dog.
“Animals have abilities and feelings beyond our understanding. Animals can sense the energy and mood swings of the people around them,” Oliveira said. “Rosie doesn’t follow people running, she follows people who need a few minutes of peace. Rosie doesn’t smell drugs and guns, she smells sadness.
“Rosie is not only compassionate, but a reminder to all of us around us to be compassionate ourselves.”
Guys, pack up!:Two new puppies have doubled Bristol County’s cozy dog list. But that’s not all.
The ceremony ended Rosie’s busy week
Rosie’s need for some shut-eye on Friday is understandable; it was a big week for him after all. According to her handler, School Resource Officer Jeremy Demello, she has been hanging out with her all week at Roosevelt Middle School as she gets to know her new work environment and the familiar faces she will see in the future.
“Rosie’s first day of work was Monday,” Demello said. “It’s been great – the kids loved it straight away, the staff maybe even more. I think I’ve had more people say hello than before.”
Demello said Rosie will be stationed with him at Roosevelt Middle School, although there are plans for the duo to visit some of the city’s elementary schools. “I’ll be able to give presentations on how to interact with a dog and what the best practices are,” she said. “Even though he’s never bitten or anything like that, it’s good for kids to know how to approach a dog, offer their hand and let them smell the dog – so it can all be a bit educational as well as an introduction. “
Demello, who has been a New Bedford police officer for 17 years and a school resource officer for six years, even found a way to give Friday’s inauguration a dual function, using it as a reward for a small group of students. I chose to take a short break from studying to be persistent. “The core values of the school are to be respectful, motivated and successful, and the kids here today exemplify those things, they do the right thing every day, they don’t get into trouble,” he said. “A lot of them are in my after school clubs. I run a Dungeons and Dragons club, a Magic: The Gathering club, and Dream Police Academy, and a lot of these kids were in one, two, or three of those groups.”
More school news:GNB Voc-Tech is awaiting a decision on the After Dark pilot from New Bedford Public Schools.
As for Rosie’s personality, Demello describes her as well-behaved and calm at home and at school. “She’s a very good girl,” he said. “He sat on the couch with me the other day and watched ‘Judge Judy’ for two hours.”
Born to work
New Bedford police media relations officer Holly Huntoon was praised and thanked by the chief for her role in the search and recovery of Rosie, who came from Cove Angels Breeding in Taunton, where she was trained by Kerry Buckley. “I had been looking for a dog for three or four months and I came across Kerry because the South Kingston Police Department had a new mercy dog and I saw that they were going to Cove Angels Breeding,” Huntoon said, noting Oliveira’s choice. Rosie’s name reflects her association with Roosevelt School. “He’s already very highly trained which shows his intelligence as he’s only 12 weeks old.”
According to Huntoon, while Rosie is not yet certified as a therapy dog (hence her “compassion” dog name), her initial training has prepared her well for her role. “We’re planning to get him certified, but Kerry actually trains them as therapy dogs, so he’s been training for this kind of work since he was born,” she said. “I think a lot of people will benefit from it and I’m very happy that Officer Demello has it because I know he’s going to take care of it.”
Buckley, who attended the ceremony, received a Senior Award for donating Rosie to the department.
Just getting started?
If things go well with Rosie, Oliveira said, he would be open to the idea of expanding compassionate dog programs in the city. “Expanding is definitely something we want to explore. It’s good for building relationships, building public trust – that’s what we do. It inspires engagement,” Oliveira said. Standard times. “This week has been very successful. Officer Demello says the whole climate of the school changed as soon as the dog showed up.”
As is customary at departmental swearing-in ceremonies, Rev. Dave Lima was present to give the benediction. Working with Demello, Lima said Rosie and Roosevelt Middle School are in good hands. “He’s done so much in terms of compassion and helping people…. I’ve known him for years and we’ve worked together in the community around people who are suffering, in pain; and we know he’s been through that. , he offered to help for that.” and now with new partner Rosie I know it’s going to take it to another level.
Know:Early voting for New Bedford’s state election begins Oct. 22 — here’s what you need to know
“This is what makes a 21st century police department,” said District 6 City Councilman Ryan Pereira, who celebrated his first return since graduating from Roosevelt Middle School 11 years ago on Friday. unites the community and adds another tool to the tool bag these wonderful officers already have.”
In addition to thanking Buckley and the school department for welcoming Rosie, Oliveira also credited Melissa Raposo of Melissa’s Pet Depot in Dartmouth for donating a “starter pack” of supplies for Rosie.