Two-year-old Dutch Shepherd, Scout, is a canine companion for his handler Kristine Wunder, who is the ARRIVE Team’s Environmental Health and Safety Manager. Together this inseparable duo head out to the New T1 construction sites throughout the week and monitor safety and environmental impacts. Kristine evaluates safety conditions and Scout watches out for Kristine.
Kristine is a retired combat Army veteran who suffered injuries while serving in Iraq including hearing and vision loss on her left side, and she experiences ongoing anxiety and post-traumatic stress. If Kristine starts to feel anxiety, Scout immediately responds by focusing on her and re-directs her focus to him which reduces her anxiety. He also aids by being her ears and eyes on the left side.
According to Kristine, “Scout is my Savior because he enables and empowers me to live a more fulfilled and active life.”
Kristine and Scout’s partnership began in March 2020 through Shelter to Soldier, a nonprofit organization that adopts dogs from local shelters and trains them to become psychiatric service dogs for post-9/11 combat veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury and/or other psychological injuries associated with traumatic service experiences.
Not only did Kristine need Scout but Scout needed a home. Just two months before Kristine and Scout were matched, Shelter to Soldier had rescued Scout after being given up by his previous owners to a shelter. According to Kristine “The second we saw each other, it was meant to be. Scout immediately knew what I needed. It is in Scout’s nature to work hard and make a difference. He needs a purpose.”
For 10 months Kristine and Scout have worked together to improve her handling skills and his skills as a patient service animal. Scout goes to work with Kristine at the ARRIVE trailers throughout the week before making their way to the New T1 construction site. According to Kristine, “His ability to do his job enables me to be more focused and successful at my job. This means he is truly helping save lives every day by helping me ensure safe construction sites while we build the New Terminal 1.”
Watch this dynamic duo in action.