ABQ K-9 Crew returns to Sunport to comfort anxious travelers

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The ABQ K-9 Crew is back at the Albuquerque International Sunport following some time off due to the pandemic.

There are 25 dogs in the crew, with two or three walking around the airport at a time. The dogs are wearing a vest that says “Pet Me." However, the vests aren’t just a cute outfit, but a uniform.

“They are all certified therapy dogs and they come here to greet travelers and provide comfort for anybody who may be nervous or finds traveling stressful,” said Jonathan Small, an Albuquerque Sunport spokesperson.

KOB 4 met some of the crew members named The Dude, Rowdy and Duck.

The Dude’s handler, Barbara Doner, is happy to be back.

“I hated the fact that we were off for a year, but I understand that, but the dogs missed it which was surprising to me that the dogs came back very excited,” said Doner.

She said this is a good time for the dogs to return – to help anyone having a ruff time. Many people haven’t traveled in a while and might find it difficult to get back into an airplane.

“It just takes all the stress away from them,” said Doner. “It really helps a lot of the people that are nervous about heading back to the airport and being around people and such.”