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School Dog

November 2020


Cerys is a Welsh Springer Spaniel. Welsh Springer Spaniels are less common, but are know to be friendly, loyal and affectionate. Cerys has been in school on a part time basis.

There are significant benefits for children to have contact with a dog in school. A dog can help to improve confidence and achievement, calm behaviour and support children at risk of emotional or mental health issues. At Elmgrove, we recognise the potential benefit of having a dog in school, however, we also understand that it is essential that it is the right dog with the right training in order to safely and successfully work with our children.

Welsh Springer Spaniel 

As such, our school dog is working with Paws and Learn (PAL) to ensure the health, safety and wellbeing of both the dog and the children. Paws and Learn is a company dedicated to training carefully selected dogs to help teach children non-violence, empathy, respect, kindness, love responsibility, friendship and trust.

For the first twelve months Cerys will be in her Foundation year of training. She will be a School Puppy in training and will be ‘behind the scenes’ at Elmgrove. She will be coming into school on a part-time basis and staying with Mrs Gardner in her office to get used to the school environment. She will be doing some training around the school at quiet times such as the beginning and the end of the day. During this time there will be no contact with the pupils whilst she is settling in to the school and learning her basic cues. At around twelve months she will become a School Dog in training and will enter her Intermediate year before entering her Graduate year when she is around two. She will be assessed via termly wellbeing and skills checks through PAL.

Once fully trained and assessed, Cerys will become a certified School Dog. To reach this standard she must have a suitable temperament, have undergone in-depth positive reinforcement training and have been rigorously assessed to check that she is competent and safe to work in the educational environment. Cerys would continue to be affiliated to Paws and Learn which has other dogs being trained in schools in various parts of the country

If you would like to find out more please read our School Dog Policy or ask to speak with Mrs Gardner.