Const. Sully at your service

Four-legged pooch tags along as Const. Cheryl Ponee visits schools

Const. Sully tags along with his owner, East Hants RCMP Const. Cheryl Ponee, as she visits the schools in East Hants. Already, Sully as visitied Hants North Rural High/Kennetcook District; Hants East Rural High; and Enfield Elementary School. Const. Ponee said Sully has lifted up the morale of some students during his short time already. (Healey photo)

MILFORD: An unlikely furry friend is making an impact on students at schools throughout East Hants.

Const. Sully as he is known—a Labradoodle—is Const. Cheryl Ponee’s new family dog. In the past week or more the East Hants District RCMP School Liaison officer has brought Const. Sully to Enfield Elementary; Hants North Rural High/Kennetcook District School; and Hants East Rural High.

Const. Ponee said Sully is beneficial too the students.

“He brings a lot of emotional therapy and it’s good socialization for him,” she said as Sully sat nearby keeping his eyes on the reporter. “It’s good motivation for the kids at the elementary school. If they pay attention and ask good questions, they get to hangout with Officer Sully at the end of it.”

She said she’s only been in a few schools so far, but will be visiting the other schools.

Const. Ponee said Sully is hypoallergenic and doesn’t shed, so there’s no worries about dog allergies.

“I did it with my first dog, loved it, and she became a very good social dog,” she said. “I figured I would do the same with Sully, and the kids really enjoy it.

“They light up when they walk through the doors and they see him. They come here first thing in the morning now to see if he is here to take him to class.”

When she walks into the school, the first question she’s asked is where Sully is.

“They don’t care that I’m here,” she said jokingly. “He struts out of the police car now like he owns it.”

She said by the end of the day Const. Sully is exhausted.

“The students take him for walks on their free blocks; at lunch time,” she said. “In the class, he is such a good dog he just lays there and listens with them to the teacher.”

As Const. Ponee spoke about the goal of having Sully around, he gave a big moan showing that he was ready for a nap and it was just 10:30 a.m.

“One girl walked in the other day and said she was having a bad day, but then she saw Sully and that made her day much better,” she said. “I think he brings a little morale to the school.

“There’s so much the kids have to deal with nowadays, it’s nice to have something positive.”

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Patrick Healey
Pat has grown up in East Hants, having called Milford, and now Enfield home. He graduated from the journalism program at Holland College in 2001, and has spent time at newspapers in NL and Alberton and Summerside, PEI before becoming a reporter/photographer at The Weekly Press/The Laker in October 2008. He has a rescue kitty named Asha that is much loved—and spoiled. Pat is also our "social engagement guru." Check him out on twitter!