WINDSOR LOCKS -- At Bradley International Airport this season you might not be looking forward to the baggage fees and security lines, but there is a new welcoming committee bringing smiles: therapy dogs.
Six-year-old Raven, a coated German Sheppard and five-year-old James, an Australian Sheppard, have been working the concourse with their volunteer handlers for the past few months. People should expect to see more of them as the holiday travel season ramps up.
Kevin Dillon, the executive director of the Connecticut Airport Authority said, "the canines walk around the airport and people just gravitate to them, it gives folks a good feeling."
The pilot program began when Bright Spot Therapy Dogs, based in Northampton, Massachusetts and the airport authority struck up an agreement for their canines to help out on the concourse.
Bright Spot founder Cynthia Hinckley said, "just the simple act of petting a dog lowers blood pressure and actually makes you feel good."
Volunteers Sally King and Karyn Cordner, have been certified with their therapy dogs and say the experience has been positive for travelers at Bradley.
"It's very gratifying," said Cordner who owns Raven, "we think the dogs make a difference."