Daisy Dog Squad

Daisy Dog

The Headteacher is in the process of training up her Labrador – “Daisy” (born March 2018), to become a ‘Pets as Therapy’ dog to work with children. If you haven’t heard about the wonderful effects that ‘Pets as Therapy’ dogs (and other animals) can have on children, then it is worth a look at various websites such as https://petsastherapy.org  These dogs can help with supporting children with their reading, with helping children with special educational needs or with behavioural issues and generally provide a lovely calming atmosphere when ‘working’ with children.

As part of her training, Daisy comes into school and spends time in the Headteacher’s office. There is a special ‘pen’ for her, so she can be kept safely should someone else need to come into the office. On the days that she is in school, a sign is placed in the office door(s), so that all visitors know to ‘knock and wait’ so the Headteacher can be sure that Daisy can get into her ‘pen’ before the visitor comes in.

Daisy does not go out with the children at break/lunch times, and uses the public land adjacent to the school driveway for any toileting. No person (child or adult) are ever forced to be with Daisy – either as part of her training or when she eventually starts ’working’. Care and attention is always given when Daisy is at Branston Juniors, to ensure the safety of the children and of the dog. During training (and when Daisy has qualified to ‘work’ at the school), careful thought has been given as to which location is used, so as to avoid any upset to children who may not wish to work with her, or those that may have an allergy. When you complete the ‘Pupil Record’ sheet for your child, you are able to indicate if your child has a fur allergy; therefore the school will be aware of this. If your child has a fear of dogs (or similar); please contact the school, so that we are aware and can act accordingly.

The training for Pets as Therapy, will take a while, so Daisy will not be qualified to actually ‘work’ with the children for some time; however your child can sign up to be part of the ‘Daisy Dog Squad’ and help with her training by reading to her. This is only for a few minutes at a time and usually takes place in the afternoon. A quiet area is set up by the photocopier, Daisy stays on her lead and the Headteacher remains with Daisy at all times. The Children sit on chairs near to Daisy and read to her.

The best children to help with her training, are ones who are used to being around dogs and can therefore react calmly should she lick them or offer them a paw. The Daisy Dog Squad needs children who can calmly, but firmly say ‘no’ and, if necessary, gently move Daisy so that she learns what she needs to do.

If your child wishes to be a part of the Daisy Dog Squad, then you will need to complete a Parental Consent Form, which is available from Reception. This consent is re-sought at the start of every academic year, to give all children the opportunity to join or leave the group and so we can be sure there are no changes in health and safety aspects such as allergies etc.

If you have any queries, concerns, wish to meet Daisy, or simply want to find out more information about the Pets As Therapy scheme, please do not hesitate to contact the Headteacher.