Dog helps comfort kids in "scary" courtrooms

Tibet is a hero dog. She has a special gift for knowing when kids are scared and need some comfort at the Hillsboroug...

Posted: Apr. 3, 2018 5:30 PM
Updated: Apr. 3, 2018 5:30 PM

Tibet is a hero dog. She has a special gift for knowing when kids are scared and need some comfort at the Hillsborough County Courthouse. The children she helps are often neglected, abused or abandoned. A judge may be deciding their fate.

Tibet is the first of her kind in Florida: a Courthouse Facility Dog. She is part of the Voices for Children program benefiting Guardian ad Litem.

"A kind face or a mean face drastically effects how safe we feel in our environment," says her mom, Brenda Kocher. "She sees kids and there's something about that small size and the way they move and she just gravitates to that."

Tibet is a 6-year-old Golden Retriever-Labrador mix and has been with Brenda about four years.

One of Tibet's signature moves is licking.

"That's what she does when she greets kids," says Brenda. "It's a nurturing behavior. It really just helps calm them down."

For Tibet's loyal and trustworthy service to the children of Hillsborough County, the Florida Veterinary Medical Association bestowed upon her the 2018 Pet Hero Award.

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