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Funeral Home Adopts Therapy Puppy To Help Comfort Grieving Families

A North Carolina funeral home has recently added a new, furry employee to its staff — 10-week-old Bernese puppy, Mochi!

According to WGAL, this adorable pup has been hired as part of Macon Funeral Home's grief support team to help comfort grieving families. So suffice it to say, this is one very good doggo.

On January 14, the funeral home shared a post on Facebook to announce little Mochi's arrival.

Facebook | Macon Funeral Home

"Say hello to Mochi, the newest member of Macon Funeral Home," the post reads. "She’s an eight-week-old Bernese Mountain Dog who loves people and loves to sleep. We hope she will become a member of our grief support team and make therapy visits to those in need with her mom, Tori McKay."

McKay is the funeral home's office administrator who thought the pup would make the perfect therapy dog.

Macon Funeral Home

"I have this dream of having a dog at the funeral home for years," she wrote on the business' website, "10 to be exact."

As McKay explained, Bernese Mountain Dogs are a very loyal, affectionate, and gentle breed, which makes Mochi the perfect candidate for such an important job.

Unsplash | Alexandra Lau

So when she and her husband welcomed the sweet puppy into their family, she realized Mochi (pronounced mow-chee) would also make a wonderful addition to the funeral home, too.

There is also plenty of research that shows the benefits of being in the company of animals during times of grief.

Unsplash | Jorge Alcala

According to Psychology Today, people who interact with animals experience increased levels of oxytocin (AKA the "love" hormone), and in fact, there's even some evidence that suggests keeping a furry friend around can decrease levels of cortisol (AKA the "stress" hormone).

It can also raise levels of dopamine, which is the feel-good chemical in our brains.

Although Mochi isn't officially a therapy dog just yet, she's gearing up to start her training soon.

McKay said that once the pup is between the age of 6 months and one year, she'll receive her formal training.

Until then, this dog momma is working hard to train and socialize her to get her ready for her very important role at the funeral home.

"Bernese Mountain Dogs do not have long life expectancy — six to eight years is typical," McKay explained. "I want her life to hold as much purpose as possible."

h/t: WGAL

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