A recent report highlighted children working with
therapy dogs experienced increased motivation for learning, resulting in
Therapy dogs are being used to support children with
social and emotional learning needs, which in turn can assist with literacy
What are therapy dogs?
It's important to note therapy dogs are not service dogs.
Service dogs are trained to provide specific support for individuals with
disabilities such as visual or hearing difficulties, seizure disorders,
mobility challenges, and/or diabetes.
The role of therapy dogs is to react and respond to
people and their environment, under the guidance and direction of their owner.
For example, an individual might be encouraged to gently pat or talk to a dog
to teach sensitive touch and help them be calm.
Research into the effects of therapy dogs in schools is
showing a range of benefits including:
- increase in school attendance
- gains in confidence
- decreases in learner anxiety behaviours resulting in improved learning outcomes, such as increases in reading and writing levels
changes towards learning and improved motivation, and
relationships with peers and teachers due to experiencing trust and
unconditional love from a therapy dog. This in turn helps students learn how to
express their feelings and enter into more trusting relationships.
Please note that although we have therapy dogs working at
school, they have special permission and training to do so. Including
training for the owners. No other dogs are permitted on school
Loganholme State School already has two therapy dogs working as Reading
Dogs with our students and are having great success.