Nattie begins new life outside of Marquette

Nattie+walks+across+campus+wearing+her+MUPD+gear.+Marquette+Wire+stock+photo

Nattie walks across campus wearing her MUPD gear. Marquette Wire stock photo

Nattie, Marquette University Police Department’s beloved community outreach dog, has recently stepped down from her role. The April 22 announcement on Nattie’s Instagram came with a flood of comments from Marquette students, who would miss seeing the dog-in-uniform around campus.

MUPD Captain Katie Berigan said Nattie first came to Marquette in July of 2017.

“One of our officers was fostering her from the Wisconsin Humane Society and saw the opportunity to incorporate Nattie into our outreach efforts,” Berigan said in an email.

Berigan said Nattie was a part of many community events, such as Coffee with Nattie in the Alumni Memorial Union coffee shop The Brew, fundraising appearances, student support events and even events off campus.

Komal Khatri, a first year in the College of Health Sciences, remembers hearing about Nattie for the first time.

“It was during orientation and all the orientation leaders told us to go up to the officer and ask to pet her,” Khatri said in a phone interview. “I took them up on that offer.”

It was not long after that Khatri remembers seeing Nattie during one of her famous brew appearances. She also remembers getting to know the police officer with Nattie.

“There was always one officer there who was super nice to me and my roommate and he would talk to us and remember us,” Khatri said in a phone interview.

Khatri and her roommate were two students that interacted with Nattie frequently. Even for those that didn’t interact with her regularly, she was still well-known.

Brian Keefer, a non-degree Marquette student who graduated in 2019, explained how even though he never really interacted with Nattie, he sees her as the Marquette dog.

“She was the community dog and mostly everybody likes dogs and people wanted to support that,” Keefer said in a phone interview. “Maybe it made them feel like it was their own dog at times.”

Keefer, a safety services officer, said he would see her walking around in the office. He remembers one of the officers bringing Nattie around to those working at the front desk for a late night visit one day while working in Abbotsford.

Though Nattie brought joy to those on campus, Berigan said it was time for Nattie to retire.

She said being an outreach dog is demanding, and with the irregular hours, it was hard being the only dog in the office.

“After a few years of rising to those demands, Nattie has earned her time away, to spend her life as a pet with another dog (she LOVES other dogs) and a family routine, and where she can go to bed at seven every night,” Berigan said in an email.

Berigan said Nattie was representative of Marquette because she believes she made students feel more comfortable around officers. She could see how happy Nattie made those who saw her.

Khatri also thought Nattie made the officers more approachable for the student body.

“It gave the police officers a good name and a friendly face and encouraged people to talk to the officers and get to know them,” Khatri said in a phone interview.

Though Nattie will not physically be on campus anymore, students can keep up with Nattie’s new life on her new Instagram account @citizennattie.

This story was written by Ariana Madison. She can be reached at ariana.madson@marquette.edu.