NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Therapy dog aims to calm Aberdeen International Airport passengers

Harley Image copyright Niel Chisholm

A therapy dog has been used at Aberdeen International Airport in what is claimed to be a UK first.

Harley, a rescue malamute, has been helping travellers who may be feeling stressed, and some with disabilities.

Harley - and owner Niel Chisholm - have been working on a trial basis. It is hoped Harley could become a permanent feature.

The airport said therapy dogs were quite common in American airports but it was not aware of any in the UK.

Mr Chisholm said: "When we go to the airport we start at the assistance check-in, where people with disabilities go.

"We then have a wander round past check-in, through security and duty free - 99% of the reactions have been positive.

"Harley just does his magic, everybody loves him, but we always ask before approaching someone as not all are dog lovers.

"At all times I monitor Harley as his wellbeing comes first. He gets plenty of breaks."

Airport duty manager Fraser Bain said: "He is a beautiful dog with such a gentle nature that people warmed to him straight away.

"We are keen to explore further ways of how Harley can be of benefit to passengers travelling through the airport."

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