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Canine Assistant to the Chaplain

Bertha Marilla Blythe-Ford, better known as Rilla (she/her), is the canine assistant to the chaplain. A service dog who is always with Pastor Jean-Daniel, she also offers her snuggles and hugs with students who request her services.

Rilla is a border collie, a sheep herding dog by breeding, so well suited to be assistant to a pastor. She is named after the youngest daughter of Anne of Green Gables, the protaganist of Lucy Maud Montgomery's book Rilla of Ingleside. Some descriptions of Rilla that fit both the fictional human and very real dog include:

  • "Wherever Rilla Blythe was, there was laughter."

  • "She had great, dreamy, hazel eyes."

  • "She had been much petted and was a wee bit spoiled, but still the general opinion was that Rilla Blythe was a very sweet girl."

Professionally, Rilla is an expert on hearing dangers and alarms, calming human anxiety attacks, and navigating busy intersections. In her free time, she loves running, swimming, fetching, and obstacle courses.

Rilla is a service dog with the Réseau des Autistes au Québec. She does not have a phone or email, but you can follow her adventures on Facebook and Instagram.

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