For those who haven’t already met Otis, we would like to introduce you to him as our friendly school therapy dog, (pictured here with Owen). Otis ‘lives’ in school during the day and goes home every evening with Mr Simpson, our headteacher, to spend time in a family environment.
Otis is now 18 months old and we are extremely proud of him. He is such a positive presence and provides support for students and staff during times of emotional pressure. He is also extremely popular with our visitors!
Otis has now reached the stage where we would like to share him (as our ‘prized asset’) with the people in our local community.
There are numerous research articles which highlight the benefits of pet therapy for people, young and old:
- Calming Effect
- Improved Mood
- Combating feelings of loneliness and isolation
- Emotional support during periods of stress and anxiety
- Decreased Behavioural Problems in children
We are keen to forge links with the elderly in our community through visits with Otis to local day or residential centres. Otis would be brought along for an hour or so at a mutually agreed time, accompanied by a member of staff and one or two of our students; in this way, social outcomes for our students would also be improved as they experience a sense of purpose by helping others.
If you work with elderly people who you think might enjoy meeting Otis, please contact our school office in the first instance on 0151 652 8071.