What are the Benefits of Animal Therapy?
Therapy animals, especially dogs, have known benefits of enhancing children’s psychological development, improving social skills and increasing self-esteem. Not only can dogs teach responsibility, compassion and respect for other living things, but in a school setting, dogs can be used to calm fears, relieve anxiety and teach skills.
On-Campus Assistance Dog-in-Training
The Parish School benefits from having a dog on campus full-time that is being trained to become an assistance dog. Elementary Speech-Language Pathologist, Heather Hillery is a volunteer puppy raiser with Canine Companions for Independence, a non-profit organization that places assistance dogs with individuals who have disabilities. Heather has raised two puppies at The Parish School with plans to raise a third. The puppy will accompany Heather to school each day and interact with students in the elementary classes.
Read more about Heather and her work with Canine Companions:
- "Pup gets an education along with students at Parish School"
(Houston Chronicle, Aug. 18, 2016)
- "Service dog in training eases student stress"
(KHOU-TV, May 13, 2016)