Meet Dune: Our New Therapy Dog

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Meet Dune: Our New Therapy Dog

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In September, VHS  welcomed another therapy dog into our school, named Dune. This adorable addition is thanks to our school nurse Mrs. Francis, who has coordinated Dune’s monthly visits. 

After speaking with Dune’s owner, Ms. Milner, I’ve learned a lot about the many benefits of therapy dogs in schools. She expressed to me just how much of an impact dogs can have with students. 

“There are so many ways that people of all ages can interact with a therapy dog in a school setting, she said. “Something as simple as just being able to pet a dog that’s walking in the hall to more formalized activities in classrooms, libraries, small group settings, etc. can provide benefits such as lifting people’s spirits, easing loneliness and boosting self esteem.” 

There is also a lot that goes into training a therapy dog. Unlike typical, non-working dogs, these dogs must undergo a specific set of training in order to be certified. For Dune specifically, he completed his training both at home and with the organization “Bright and Beautiful Therapy Dogs.” Throughout his training, he has learned many socialization skills, basic commands (sit, stay, come, etc.) and how to react to people in wheelchairs, using canes, and even to loud noises. In addition to Dune passing, his handler must also complete the program and pass.  

Dune will be coming to VHS about twice a month and we are happy to welcome him. 

 

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