“Kerith,” the golden retriever, aims to improve the mental health of first responders


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CALIFORNIA – A golden retriever with a little too much energy as a puppy to be a guide dog has found another way to help those in need.

Kerith is a 3-year-old golden retriever on a mission to comfort first responders.

“Firefighters and husbands and kids who thank me … it’s so cool,” said Kerith’s owner, Heidi Carmen. “It’s so heartwarming. It makes me tearful and makes me so proud of what I’m doing.”

Carmen says the puppy has always loved firefighters and they will love them back.

“That one firefighter I saw came up and said, ‘Is that Kerith?’ And she just started crying, “added Carmen.

Kerith and Carmen take their job seriously.

“They are the helpers. They are the ones who help us and they don’t ask for help. And they have to ask for help,” said Carmen.

What may be difficult for a person to say – Kerith just seems to understand.

“Kerith loves firefighters. So I decided to start a nonprofit so I can help Kerith help out firefighters. We have developed a certification, an entire process, so that people can become first aid therapy dogs because there is such a need, ”added Carmen.

On Wednesday, Kerith and Carmen drive to the Sequoia National Forest to meet the first responders who work there.

ABC News contributed to this report.

Copyright © 2021 ABC News Internet Ventures.

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