Our School dog
Meet our school dog, Benji!
Benji is a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, chosen because they are a loyal, intelligent and friendly breed that respond well to training and are sociable and friendly.
Benji will be kept on a lead when moving between classrooms or on a walk and will be under the full control and supervision of a designated adult.
His key members of staff are Mrs Pritchard, Mrs Power, Mrs Forrester, Mrs Appleby, Mr Sloper and Ms Milne.
Numerous research studies have shown the benefits of therapy dogs in schools. Benefits of having a school dog include:
Cognitive – companionship with a dog stimulates memory, problem-solving and game-playing.
Social – a dog provides a positive mutual topic for discussion, encourages responsibility, wellbeing and focused interaction with others.
Emotional – a school dog improves self-esteem, acceptance from others and lifts mood, often provoking laughter and fun. Dogs can also teach compassion and respect for other living things as well as relieving anxiety.
Physical – interaction with a furry friend reduces blood pressure, provides tactile stimulation, assists with pain management, gives motivation to move, walk and stimulates the senses.
Environmental – a dog in a school increases the sense of a family environment, with all of the above benefits continuing long after the school day is over.
Reading – reading to dogs has been proven to help children develop literacy skills and build confidence, through both the calming effect the dog’s presence has on children as well as the fact that a dog will listen to children read without being judgemental or critical. This comforting environment helps to nurture children’s enthusiasm for reading and provides them with the confidence to read aloud.
Clear guidelines are given to the children about how to handle and interact with Benji and if children really don't want to have contact with him then this is absolutely fine - they can let an adult know or parents/carers can let the school office know by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org.
A full risk assessment has been completed and should you wish to obtain a copy of this or our School Dog Policy, please contact the school office.
To watch a video of the day in the life of a school dog, please click here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cX3wjrP1xZU