Calm­ing Bil­lie helps to heal grief

Western Suburbs Weekly - - News -

SU­BI­ACO fu­neral home Chip­per Fu­ner­als is help­ing griev­ing fam­i­lies through the use of their grief ther­apy dog, Bil­lie.

The seven-year-old bor­der col­lie-kelpie cross first started vis­it­ing the fu­neral home last year and un­ex­pect­edly took on the role.

Fu­neral con­duc­tor and Bil­lie’s owner Bron­wyn Med­hurst said the usu­ally bouncy dog be­came very calm around griev­ing fam­i­lies.

“Bil­lie is amaz­ing with griev­ing fam­i­lies and has helped ease some of their emo­tions,” she said.

“It’s our job to make peo­ple feel the most com­fort­able in an aw­ful sit­u­a­tion, so if Bil­lie can help with that then why not? He has a very calm­ing af­fect on peo­ple and will just sit at their feet and wait for pats.”

She said Bil­lie had be­come a per­ma­nent fix­ture at Chip­pers, with many peo­ple ask­ing to see him.

“I don’t al­low Bil­lie to be around peo­ple un­less they are com­fort­able with (him),” she said.

“We have a play area for him out the back and has such a pos­i­tive pres­ence for ev­ery­one, in­clud­ing all of the staff.”

Pic­ture: An­drew Ritchie www.com­mu­ni­typix.com.au d455097

Bron­wyn Med­hurst with her bor­der col­lie-kelpie cross Bil­lie.

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