To celebrate her first birthday, Merrimack’s dedicated comfort dog Merri and her patrol partner, officer Chuck Anderson, greeted community members outside the Sakowich Campus Center on Tuesday. Merri, a black Labrador, wore a festive birthday outfit and was surrounded by balloons as faculty, staff and students stopped by to pet her.
Partygoers wished Merri a happy birthday and enjoyed grab-and-go paw-shaped chocolate “pawty” favors. The celebration was held in accordance with all COVID-19 safety guidelines and required participants to wear face coverings and socially distance from others.
Merri completed her comfort dog training in August and is now a full-time working member of the Merrimack College police department. Merri and patrol partner Anderson can be found “pawtrolling” campus, saying hi to community members and making special guest appearances at student activities.
Merri’s primary role is to promote community engagement and comfort community members in stressful situations. Anderson says that she is a powerful ambassador for building a positive rapport between College police and the Merrimack community.
“Merri has had such a positive impact on campus and has the power to make people smile,” Anderson said. “She is truly a member of the Merrimack family.”