Steph first realised Romeo’s special qualities when she saw how calm and gentle he was with her 95-year-old grandmother.
Steph added: “Romeo became nan’s best friend and unofficial therapy dog. Watching them together that made me realise the qualities that Romeo has led me to look into how he could use them to make a difference.”
Children's best friend
Romeo also helped the niece and nephew of Steph’s partner to overcome their fear of dogs. In fact, Romeo was such a hit with Mimi and Sidney that they even persuaded their mum to get them a dog of their own.
Mimi wrote a letter to explain the huge impact Romeo has had on her life. She said: “I used to be very scared of dogs and would hide behind my mum if I met any as I walked along the street. My uncle has a dog called Romoe he is big with starey eyes.
"I went to the stables, saw him and hid. He found me and I screamed then he moved away. After a while he came back and stood looking at me. Romeo sniffed me then licked me.
"He was very quiet and gentle. We are now great friends, we walk together and play football and not forgetting tug of war. I am no longer scared of him or any other dogs.”
The Blue Cross Medal was reinstated in 2014 to mark the centenary of the First World War, when we awarded a number of medals to honour horses which had served on the battlefields.