Pets As Therapy At CHS

Introducing Bertie the Cavapoo and Pep the Catalan Sheep dog!  They are both PAT (Pets as Therapy) trained dogs, and have been visiting the School to aid pupils who maybe struggling and are in need of some quality time with these furry friends.

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Pet therapy is a concept which has been trialled at CHS this academic year by the First Aid Team, and the feedback it has received is astonishing.

Bertie and Pep both visit CHS allowing one afternoon per week and work mainly on a one to one basis, but have been introduced to classes in the Junior School. Pupils who attend one to one sessions with the dogs fill in questionnaires before and after, and the results show a huge improvement in mood and mental health after time spent together.

However, Pep and Bertie are busy dogs! They don’t just visit CHS…

CHS Medical Manager Debbie Woodcock states, “We both visit the Tree House Children’s Ward and both dogs were used to reintroduce the pet therapy services at the hospital post Covid. We have worked with a number of children with both physical and mental health problems, and to see the pleasure they derive from interacting with him and grooming / stroking him is very rewarding. We have also been asked to visit the stroke unit and he gets lots of fuss and attention from the patients in these wards.”

Bertie is owned by Maria Keyworth, a dedicated pet owner who gives up her spare time to help others.

PAT began their service in 1983, and since then it has diversified to such an extent that a huge number of people in a wide range of situations now benefit from their very special brand of care, companionship and therapy.

PAT’s vision is to have teams all across communities in the UK, and one huge step towards that is introducing PAT animals into more schools and educational settings.

We are incredibly grateful at CHS for the quality time that Maria and Bertie, and Debbie and Pep spend with pupils. The love and happiness they provide, is like no other.


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