Marquette University police dog helping students who can't be home for the long weekend

NOW: Marquette University police dog helping students who can’t be home for the long weekend

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) – Having to stay on campus for a long weekend can be a drag, but for some students at Marquette University, all it takes is a dog to make them feel at home.

Alex Quiles is a freshman at Marquette University, originally from California.

“I’m not going home for Thanksgiving,” says Quiles.

But the youngest, and cutest, member of the Marquette Police Department is making her feel a little more at home.

“I used to have four at home, so I am a dog person, so definitely cool to see her around,” Quiles told CBS 58.

Nattie is the University Police Department’s dog. Since she was sworn in back in August, she’s been brightening the days of both students and staff at the school.

She lives at the Police Department where the officers like Perry Perkins take care of her.

“When we have people get victimized, have traumatic events, Nattie can come into the room and they have someplace to focus their nervous energy,” says Officer Perkins.

She’s good at comforting crime victims, but Nattie’s primary focus is community outreach, bridging the gap between students and officers.

“Taking Nattie for walks, people come up and talk to me, they share their stories with me. It really makes it easier to approach the police,” Officer Perkins said.

The pup’s positive energy reaches beyond the students. Just ask the Marquette Police Chief.

“You come into work and you get greeted by Nattie. It’s made the office a lot more fun, the fun place to be,” says Chief Paul Mascari with the Marquette University Police Department.

For students like Alex, having Nattie around makes being far from family a little easier.

“It’s probably the best part of my day, honestly running into the dog, she’s the cutest thing in the world,” said Quiles.

CBS 58 asked the Police Chief if they are considering expanding the program. He says, for now, Nattie is going to be the only pup in the department.

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