Macy the dog consoles abused children - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Macy the dog consoles abused children

By Jena Johnson - bio | email

TYLER, TX (KLTV)- Smith County is the only county in the State of Texas to employ a full time service dog.

At no expense to the tax payer, Macy, the Golden Retriever-Labrador mix received $50,000 worth of training through an organization called the Canine Companions for Independence.

Macy will comfort abused children while they have their day in court.

Two year old Macy seems like your average playful puppy, but when she puts her vest on, Macy is all business.

"Her wagging tail becomes slower, said April Sikes, First Assistant Criminal District Attorney. "She's dressed in her vest and she's right back, ready to work."

Macy is the newest full time employee at the Smith County District Attorney's Office. She specializes in consoling abused children as they journey through the court process. Sikes says Macy's role is irreplaceable.

"I think her worth would be immeasurable because she does things we humans can't do," said Sikes.

Macy's first day on the job was last Tuesday. She worked a full, eight hour day at the side of an abused child.

"The little girl's mother said if Macy does nothing else, on her first day here in the DA's office she made a difference in the life of her daughter and that's really why we have Macy here," said Sikes.

Since eight weeks old, Macy has learned more than 40 tricks. Sikes says perhaps her best is just lending a paw.

"If you could picture on the stand, a child who has a teddy and they drop that teddy bear while testifying she would actually have the ability to pick that up and give it back to the child," said Sikes.

Macy's soothing skills will play a huge role in helping prosecutors put away people who commit crimes against children.

"A prosecutors job is to seek justice and try to ascertain the truth and I think the best shot at that is when Macy brings that comfort to a child where they feel like maybe they want to tell her what happened or maybe that can get that reassurance from Macy when they testify from the stand," said Sikes.

At the end of the day, when the vest comes off, Macy reverts back to a puppy. A very special one.

Macy spends her days at the DA's office, and her nights and weekends at home with her adoptive mom, who is also an employee at the DA's office.

Copyright 2011 KLTV. All rights reserved.

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