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From lines at security checkpoints to missed and cancelled flights, air travel can sometimes be a frustrating experience, but a new program at Pensacola International Airport looks to ease some of passengers’ stress and anxiety.

On Friday, airport officials unveiled the Pensacola Pup Patrol, a new customer service initiative designed to provide stress relief, comfort, and entertainment to passengers and guests awaiting flights throughout the terminal. Similar programs are in place at airports in Los Angeles, Denver, Charlotte, San Jose, and other cities.

Linda Mills and her papillon Jet. (Derek Cosson/The Pulse)

Linda Mills and her papillon Jet. (Derek Cosson/The Pulse)

A collaboration of the airport and the Five Flags Dog Training Club’s Caring Canines program, the Pup Patrol features trained dogs and handlers who will walk the airport terminal and interact with passengers. The Caring Canines program also visits schools and senior care centers throughout the community.

“Ever since the Five Flags Dog Training Club of Pensacola was first established over 40 years ago, one of the primary goals was to give back to the community and Caring Canines is one of the ways we can do that,” said Pup Patrol handler and Connie Fleming. “We are thrilled and excited to have this marvelous opportunity to bring smiles, memories, and warm furry feelings to both Pensacola visitors and residents as they travel through our beautiful airport.”

The Pensacola Pup Patrol will be roaming the terminal and greeting guests at PNS throughout the week from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Each dog has their very own Pensacola Pup Patrol trading card with their picture and bio to offer passengers as a souvenir from their fun visit.

Maggie, a black poodle and a member of Pensacola International Airport's "Pup Patrol." (Derek Cosson/The Pulse)

Maggie, a black poodle and a member of Pensacola International Airport’s “Pup Patrol.” (Derek Cosson/The Pulse)

“We’re always looking for ways to enhance the customer experience,” said airport director Dan Flynn. “The new Pup Patrol program is one small way we can help ease the stress that some travelers may experience as they transit the facility.”

Owned and operated by the City of Pensacola, Pensacola International Airport (PNS) is the largest airport between New Orleans and Jacksonville. American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Silver Airways, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines provide daily non-stop service to 11 destinations. The airport accommodates more than 1.5 million passengers per year and generates an annual economic impact of over $565 million.

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