Our School Dogs
We are incredibly blessed to have two school dogs! Nigel and Winnie are much loved and highly valued members of our school community. They come to school every day and spend time with all children from Nursery to Year 6. You might find them out at break time playing with the children, comforting a child who is upset, or the subject of a lesson about caring for others. But one this is for sure, wherever our school dogs go, they bring joy and happiness to children and adults alike.
Nigel is a male, Shiranian (Shih Tzu-Pomeranian cross bread). He came to our school as a four month old puppy in September 2020 and was an instant hit!
The name Nigel is of English origin and means 'champion'. We think that suits him perfectly!
Winnie is a female, Cavapoo (Cavalier King Charles Spaniel-Miniture Poodle cross bread). She came to our school as a nine week old puppy in June 2022 and surprised us all!
Winnie is a name originating in Welsh and means 'fair one', 'soft' and 'happiness'. What could be more appropriate!?
Why school dogs?
- Studies have shown that the presence of companion animals can improve the wellbeing of children and lower the rate of anxiety
- Having a companion animal in school can make a positive difference to the wellbeing of both staff and pupils
- School dogs are able to provide comfort and affection to individuals in a variety of situations, helping young people cope with emotions, disorders or relationships
- School dogs can enhance a child’s psychological development, improve social skills and increase self-esteem among other benefits
- Dogs can teach responsibility, compassion and respect for other living things
- Interaction with a furry friend reduces blood pressure, provides tactile stimulation, assists with pain management, gives motivation to move / walk and stimulates the senses
- A visit with a dog provides a positive mutual topic for discussion, promotes greater self-esteem and wellbeing and focusses interaction with others
- Companionship with a dog stimulates memory, problem solving and game playing
- A four legged visitor improves self-esteem, acceptance from others and lifts the mood of the school
- A dog in a work environment decreases the feeling of a sterile environment, de-stresses adults and children alike