Simon, a six-month old Lab, may or may not be showing this younger pup how to go down the stairs — but it sure looks that way.
As with most pups, 8-week-old Daisy, managed to get up the stairs just fine, and probably without thinking first about the far scarier return trip — i.e. coming down.
When she hesitated, the owners called for Simon, who very patiently — except for a few head bites — showed her the way.
Posted by jwoestendiek January 15th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animals, behavior, daisy, dogs, labrador, learning, navigating, pets, puppies, pups, retrievers, simon, stairs, steps, teaching, training, video
Or maybe an entire pack of them.
School districts being bureaucracies, though – often quicker to look for reasons why they can’t do something, rather than actually trying something new — that doesn’t happen too often.
But in Bucks County, Pa., dogs are turning up in more and more classrooms, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
At Holland Elementary School in Bucks County, a 140-pound Rhodesian ridgeback named Kicho shows up regularly as part of a reading program.
“Sometimes, I get jittery inside when I read, but not with Kicho,” 9-year-old Conner Weinberg said. “He’s very kind and calm. He’s my friend. I think of him as my own dog.”
Kicho is one of a several dogs that have become beloved classroom companions, in Council Rock, three other Bucks County school districts and a private school, according to the Inquirer report.
The program was founded five years ago by Wendi Huttner, a Bucks County trainer and breeder of Labrador retrievers, and Deborah Glessner, a retired Council Rock School District librarian. Their nonprofit organization, Nor’wester Readers, now fields 34 teams of dogs and handlers who make weekly visits to classrooms in the Council Rock, New Hope-Solebury, Pennsbury, and Bensalem districts and to the Center School in Abington.
The basic idea of the reading program — much like the one Ace took part in with Karma Dogs – is to give children “positive reinforcement; they get the affirmation of these big brown eyes, a wag of the tail, and a kiss on the cheek,” Huttner said. Children who may feel shy about reading in front of teachers or peers can open up to a dog.
“When you are reading to your teacher, your parent, your uncle, or your librarian, and you don’t know the right word or you mispronounce a word, you are corrected,” Huttner said. Dogs, however, “are not judgmental,” she said. “There is a child in just about every class that nobody else can reach, but a dog can. They have magic. . . . It’s a wonderful thing to see.”
At Council Rock’s Richboro Middle School, Jillian, a retriever (pictured above) and her handler, Nan Muska, visit children with severe cognitive deficits who are getting training to help them cope with daily living, along with some others who have multiple disabilities and are largely nonverbal.
“My students light up,” said Tim Qualli, the school’s multiple disabilities support teacher. “They really enjoy being with her.”
(Photo: Tom Gralish / Philadelphia Inquirer)
Posted by jwoestendiek April 4th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animals, bensalem, bucks county, cognitive, council rock, dog, dogs, holland elementary school, kicho, learning, new hope, nor'wester readers, pennsbury, pennsylvania, pets, programs, reading, reading to dogs, rhodesian ridgeback, richboro middle school, school districts, schools, solebury, students, teaching, therapy, wendi huttner
A first grade class in Florida has bid farewell to Murry, the fluffy white dog who served as their class mascot.
For 10 years, Murry, who belongs to teacher Karen McGehee, had served as mascot of her classes at Astoria Park Elementary School in Tallahassee.
Adopted from the Tallahassee animal shelter, Murry only visited the class a few times a year, but his picture was displayed prominently in the classroom, where McGehee would warn misbehaving students, ”Remember, Murry is watching,” or “I don’t think Murry would like that, do you?”
She stamped his doggy image on the children’s especially good papers. His face was on the cover of her students’ sticker books. And he was the subject of a book, written by the class, called “Our Class Pet,” according to the Tallahassee Democrat.
“I think all kids, or at least most kids, love animals, especially dogs,” said Karen Hollenbeck, whose four children all passed through McGehee’s class and bonded with Murry. ”They accept you as you are — they ask no questions and give no criticisms.”
When Murry died, in December, ”we all cried,” said McGehee, who’d prepared for the dog’s demise.
She’d talked with a grief counselor who provided tiny heart-shaped pillows with paw prints on them, enough for every child when she told them of Murry’s death. Murry’s vet donated dog-angel pins for each child in the class, as well as cards bearing Murry’s paw print and locks of his white hair.
McGehee also wrote a personal letter to parents about losing Murry and sent her students home with handouts on children and pet loss that Mezzina had given her. Because Murry had been adopted from the animal shelter, McGehee set up a box for donations for animals at the Tallahassee shelter — toys, treats, old towels and blankets.
McGehee, who is nearing retirement, isn’t sure if she’ll get another mascot for her classes.
“Murry was one of a kind,” she said. “He was special,”
Posted by jwoestendiek January 20th, 2010 under Muttsblog.
Tags: animal, astoria park, class, class pet, classroom, death, died, dog, dogs, dogs in the classroom, elementary, first grade, florida, grief, karen mcgehee, lesson, mascot, murry, pets, school, shelter, tallahassee, teacher, teaching
At least two stolen pet dogs were found in an operating room used for dissections at the medical school of South America’s oldest university.
Carmen Valverde’s dog Tomas was stolen by two men while she was walking in the working-class Brena district of Lima, and a friend who works at the University of San Marcos spotted him by chance in a surgery room where dogs are dissected.
Valverde donned a lab coat and snuck into the hospital to rescue Tomas. Video her friend shot a week ago, aired on local television, shows him sedated, splayed, and strapped to a stainless steel table.
After local newspapers published the story, other people missing dogs rushed to the hospital’s door and one owner found her dog Chico.
“The University of San Marcos still hasn’t apologized for what it has done,” Valverde told Reuters Thursday. According to the article, The University of San Marcos does not have access to enough human cadavers for its students, so they sometimes cut open dogs instead.
Ricardo Rubios, dean of the medical school, acknowledged that stolen dogs had wound up in the surgery room, but said the school only uses strays for classes.
“I assure you we would have returned the dog. All our experimental surgeries are done to dogs that don’t have owners,” Rubios told Reuters.
Romila Briones, a member of ASPPA, a Peruvian animal rights group, said the law does not protect strays. “In Europe, they don’t kill animals for education, they use dummies. Unfortunately, animals are just property in the eyes of the law here, like furniture,” Briones said.
Posted by jwoestendiek August 27th, 2009 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: animal welfare, carmen valverde, dissect, dissected, dissection, dog, dogs, hospital, laboratory, lima, peru, pet, practice, rescued, research, research animals, south american, surgery, teaching, tomas, university of san marcos, vivisection
Despite easily available alternatives, more than half of American colleges and universities are using live and dead dogs and cats for teaching and training purposes — including animals that were once pets, according to a new report.
The report, “Dying to Learn: Exposing the Supply of Dogs and Cats to Higher Education,” is the result of a two-year investigation by the American Anti-Vivisection Society (AAVS). The report was released today by Animalearn, the education division of AAVS.
You can download the full report, learn how to take action, and explore alternatives to animal dissection at the new AAVS website, dyingtolearn.org.
The report says 52 percent of the colleges and universities covered in the study still used dogs and cats to teach and train students in life science, veterinary, and medical education.
According to the report, former pets are also ending up in the mix — either obtained by universities directly from shelters, or sold to universities by an animal dealer. With more pets ending up in shelters due to the economic downturn, the likelihood of that happening is growing.
“The numbers of pets being relinquished to shelters is drastically increasing. This puts an ever increasing number of former pets at risk of ending up in labs,” said Animalearn Director Laura Ducceschi.
The report traces the route that sent dogs like Cruella, a shepherd-mix from Michigan to end up being used in a college laboratory. Once someone’s pet, she was purchased from a shelter and sold to a university. The dogs and cats are used for live surgeries and other procedures.
The reported looked at animal acquisition procedures at 92 public colleges and universities in the U.S.
Posted by jwoestendiek April 27th, 2009 under Muttsblog.
Tags: aavs, american anti-vivisection society, animal welfare act, animalearn, animals, cats, class b dealers, colleges, cruella, dealers, department of agriculture, dissecting, dogs, dying to learn, education, experiments, higher education, investigation, labs, medical, pets, science, shelters, student choice policies, surgeries, surgical simulation, teaching, tracie letterman, training, universities, veterinary, virtual dissection