FREE Dogs Essay Essay - ExampleEssays
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Essay: What Makes Dogs Different - Orvis News
My rescued black Lab Shyanne, is actually the reason I looked into animal assisted therapy. It was her laid back demeanor, kind hearted face, and willingness to please that encouraged me to research available options in our community where we could give something back to others. We joined WAGS (), an affiliate of the Delta Society. One obedience course later, passing the CGC, and we were on our way. Shyanne was a natural, and I finally had found my niche in life. Shyanne began her career as a Pet Partners Team member, by going to my school with me 4 days a week. I had read extensively on the topic of animal assisted therapy, and found that there was documentation on the positive effects of dogs and at-risk students. So off we went. Luckily, I had the support of an open-minded administration, which encouraged us, and gave me the opportunity to try something totally new in the educational environment. I located the Intermountain Therapy Dogs organization on the Internet, and learned about their program (Reading Education Assistance Dogs). Since we were already Delta members, we completed the requirements for Intermountain and joined as R.E.A.D team members. I developed a supplemental reading program called "PAWS TO READ" (based on the R.E.A.D model). The middle school students I work with are in an alternative education environment, as a result of behavior problems and issues with gangs, violence and crime. Often well below their grade level in the area of reading, I was determined to find someway to encourage the desire to develop their reading abilities. After months of research and reading, I decided to promote my program to the faculty, staff and students. The idea behind PAWS, is that students can and want to relate to an animal, in this case my lab, Shyanne. From this genuine and human relationship to a canine, the student can read to the best of their ability without stress, fear or embarrassment. As they relax and develop confidence in their reading abilities, the physiological benefits of being with an animal, aid in positive emotional and behavioral changes as well.