Job: Facility Dog
Birthday: March 21, 2017
Favorite Toy: Stuffed Dragon
Favorite Activity: Beach Walks
McGuffy is a yellow lab that works at CARE House of the Pee Dee.
McGuffy joined the CARE House team in May 2019. He is the first Facility Dog in the Pee Dee Region and his role is to ease anxiety in the families served. On a regular basis you may find McGuffy sitting with a child during their forensic interview or medical exam, playing a game during a therapy session or accompanying a child to court.
“Our mission is to promote help, hope, and healing in a nurturing environment to child abuse victims and their families through supportive services and prevention,” says Megan Temple, CARE House Executive Director and McGuffy’s handler. “McGuffy fits right into our mission. The children that come through our doors love him, and McGuffy loves the attention.”
McGuffy comes from an organization called Canine Companions for Independence, which provides assistance dogs all over the country. McGuffy is unlike a pet dog in that he was bred to be an assistance dog and completed a two-year training period prior to being placed with Temple. He came to CARE House with approximately 40 commands, and was rigorously tested to insure he remains docile and appropriate in all environments.
Facility dogs, which is what McGuffy is, are highly sought after, and research demonstrates improved outcomes for children, such as a decrease in anxiety, a lessened sympathetic nervous system arousal, lowered heart rate, and decrease in depression with the use of animal assisted therapy.
When McGuffy is not in interviews or counseling sessions, he can be found sleeping on the rugs of various CARE House offices and generally just being a good boy.