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Court reporters and their fur babies

The passion and love court reporters have for their furry family members are immense and evident in the Facebook group “Court Reporters and their Fur Babies” where members share pictures and stories of their pets. From cats and dogs to even pigs, donkeys, and birds, this group of 3,600-plus is an active bunch with hourly posts and a pinned warning that joining the group may result in missed deadlines and death from cuteness overload.

Stephanie Battaglia, RMR, CRR, of Hinsdale, Ill. brought the Facebook group to NCRA’s attention. Members of the group may be familiar with Battaglia’s own golden retrievers Nashville and Dixon who are also known as “Jerk 1” and “Jerk 2” respectively. When it comes to their nickname, Battaglia offered the following: “I equate them to teenage boys; they are growing into their bodies, eat anything in sight, make really stupid decisions, but at the end of the day you love them and you know they will protect you if stranger danger ever came in this house.”

Battaglia says since joining the group she has met so many colleagues that she wouldn’t have otherwise.  “I’ve been at events and people come up to me and say: “You’re mom to Jerk Dogs 1 and 2?” But mostly I have gotten to see the human, kind side to my colleagues. This group is one of the strongest, amazing groups I’ve ever been in.”

Members also use the group to share memories of pets that have since crossed the Rainbow Bridge, finding solace and even strength in each other’s posts. “The passion and love we have for our furry family members. There isn’t a group more protective over its members,” stated Battaglia when asked what she enjoys the most about being a part of the online group.

“COVID-19 has changed the game in how we all work. I’m working more than I ever have before, mostly remotely. My pets are by my side always when I am at my desk — except if I am on a Zoom job. The minute that job is over they know I have signed off and are waiting by the door for me. I’ve done many late nights working on transcripts and they stay under my desk and keep me company. It’s very soothing knowing they are nearby when I am working so hard.”

If you’re interested in adopting a pet and have weighed the necessary costs and responsibilities that go into having one, be sure to visit your local SPCA to see which animals need a forever home.