Parkland Brings Back Therapy Dogs To Help Community Get Ready For Start Of School
Therapy dogs — and even a therapy pig named "Patches" — were popular at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after the Feb. 14 shooting.
Parkland mayor Christine Hunschofsky said she was concerned students might feel isolated over the summer. So she invited the animals and their owners to attend "Therapy Dog Thursdays" at the Parkland recreation center.
"The dogs are very calming," she said during last week's event. "You probably notice when you walk in the room: they're so excited to see whoever's there. There's ... a joy from the dogs. And I think that's very comforting."
There are two more "Therapy Dogs Thursdays" — plus a bonus Tuesday event — before school starts in Broward on Aug. 15.
Visit the recreation center in Pine Trails Park today or next Thursday from 3 to 5 p.m. Or you can go from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 14 — which is the six-month anniversary of the shooting and the day before the first day of school.
Kids who experienced trauma at Marjory Stoneman Douglas shared moments when therapy dogs just knew they needed comfort and provided it with a gentle pawing or resting of the head. While reporting yesterday, I got that treatment from Emma, a rescue from Puerto Rico. pic.twitter.com/s1tcEnGeR9— Jessica Bakeman (@jessicabakeman) July 27, 2018