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Police emotional support dog experiment hailed a success
Belgium's first emotional-support police dog is celebrating her first year in the job - and the successful experiment has inspired other police forces to try the same.
Switch, a two-and-a-half-year-old Labernese, has been busy working for the Brussels-North police force since last October.
Her job is to accompany the victims of crime - children and adults - during their questioning by police. Switch's presence can help victims relax and open up to tell their version of events.
"Her role is to help victims de-stress," police inspector Nathalie Klein told RTL. "By stroking the dog, feeling her warmth and hearing her breathing, they calm down."
Police in Ghent have been following the experiment closely and now plan to hire their own emotional support dog.