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Teddy, the Therapy dog, came to live with me as a foster dog in March of 2017.
My Bloodhound JETHRO DANIEL BOONE, aka as BOONE, succumbed to the evil BLOAT in January 2017.
He was my second adoption with American Black and Tan Coonhound and Bloodhound Rescue.
His passing was devasting to me. To fill the void, I offered to foster for ABTCR. In February, I was contacted by a rescue member asking if I would take a brother and sister from Alabama. Owner was very ill and needed to rehome them. I accepted. Hank and Junebug came in March. Hank was my foster fail. Junebug found an awesome home in Maryland.
He didn’t really seem to fit his name and even acted like he didn’t even know it was his name. He was such a sweet huggable guy I thought Teddy was more fitting and he actually came to me the first time I called him that.
My dream was to have Boone certified and come to school with me to support my special needs class.
Teddy seemed to fit the profile. Pam Truax mentioned Paws for Friendship an excellent Therapy dog organization. I applied. My mom was at a Clearwater rehab facility, and I was making frequent visits to Florida. It worked out that I could meet 2 members and their dogs at her facility to have Teddy evaluated in June 0f 2017.
My teacher was thrilled with the idea of having a class therapy dog. All the parents of students in my class were notified and asked to sign permission slips for their children to interact with Teddy. All but one parent gave permission. One parent stated that their child was very afraid but she did not want him to be afraid and hoped that he would learn to accept a dog. Two weeks later the parent that didn’t sign, changed her mind because her child kept asking to pet Teddy.
Teddy began coming to school once a week in October 2017. He greets the students in the bus circle and car line as they arrive. The whole school loves Teddy. He spends his day in our classroom. He is free to wander in the class, visit the students while they work. He loves to look in their desks for treats. He usually finds traces of something! He goes to recess with us. They all want to hold his leash so they take turns walking with me.
When we are on the playground in the afternoon there are several classes with us. Teddy usually has no less than 5 children hugging, petting or kissing him on the head. We talk about their dogs. Many are rescues. We talk about how much they love TEDDY and how much he loves them. Many times, he will just lie down in the wood chips with his head on several small laps. They love to stop petting him and wait for him to lift his big paw and beg for more!!
Teddy has a bed set up in the classroom. It is not unusual to find Teddy napping after recess. It is also, not unusual to see a student lying in Teddy’s bed with or without him.
Teddy has been on the school’s morning news show with one of my students.
At the end of the day, we sit on a bench in the breezeway that leads to dismissal area. ‘Pet and go’ ‘Pet and go’ keep the lines moving. Even teachers will ‘pet and go’!!