Remy is a Goldendoodle that is owned by Det. Lt. Michelle Day, who is a Mental Health Counselor and a certified Child Forensic Interviewer. Lt. Det. Day achieved her Master’s in Clinical Mental Health Counseling and School Counseling from Canisius College. Michelle and Remy currently work in the Special Victims Unit.
Remy is utilized to provide emotional support for crime victims and people who have experienced traumatic events. At four months, Remy started her training with Ester Pullano at the Niagara K9 Training Center, LLC taking obedience classes as well as the Canine Good Citizen Class. Remy was evaluated and certified by Therapy Dogs International.
Working in the special victim’s unit, handling abuse, neglect, sexual assault and crimes against children and the elderly in North Tonawanda, Lt. Day knows how difficult it can be for a victim to open up. The idea to bring Remy onto the force began when Lt. Day found herself in a tough situation, trying to get a child to tell her story. To build rapport with the child, Lt. Day asked her to assist in choosing a new puppy. Research has shown that child victims have a 50% increase in disclosures when dogs are used in an interview.
While Remy is Lt. Day's personal pup, Lt. Day didn’t just want a new dog for her family, she wanted one that could help the public. The first therapy dog utilized in the WNY area, Remy is used for follow-up investigations regarding mental health and domestic calls, and often deployed at schools, festivals, parades and other events to encourage positive contacts between the community and the police.