A shepherd mix from Charlotte has been selected as the national weather therapy dog by The Weather Channel and American Humane Association after a nationwide search of rescue shelters.
Butler is a 35-pound, 1.5 year-old male who was rescued from the Humane Society of Charlotte, just four days after arriving at the shelter. Butler stole the hearts of producers, on-air talent and representatives from American Humane Association. The pooch and his handler – Amy McCullough of the American Humane Association – made their first appearance on The Weather Channel on Valentine’s Day.
“We searched far and wide for a dog who met the criteria to become our network’s severe weather therapy dog – and we fell in love with Butler,” said David Clark, president of The Weather Channel network. “As the number of families affected by severe weather continues to grow each year, The Weather Channel is happy to welcome Butler, who will help bring joy to these families in their time of need.”
Butler was selected because he is affectionate, loves to kiss and sit in the laps of others. He is attentive, well-mannered and energetic, and will play a vital role in the health of communities in times of disaster, officials say.
The decision to search for a therapy dog came out of the growing need to help people in hard-hit communities recover after severe weather strikes. Last December, The Weather Channel announced a partnership with American Humane Association and launched the nationwide search to find the perfect dog. In searching, several criteria had to be met. Viewers and weather.com visitors nominated rescue dogs from all over the country.
In the weeks and months following a natural disaster, Butler and American Humane Association handler Amy McCullough will visit schools, hospitals, shelters and other locations in hard-hit communities to bring comfort and service. Fans of The Weather Channel can share in Butler’s journeys and follow his trail on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/TherapyDogButler.