• CSAT's Therapy Dog

    Gus One of the Elementary School's most unique assets has four legs! The school boasts the skills of certified therapy dog, Gus.
    In 2016, the school's favorite canine passed a rigorous, four-hour test and earned his certification through Therapy Dogs International. In addition, Gus was named Canine Good Citizens by the American Kennel Club.
     
    His designations mean that Gus is able to react well to children, adults, and other animals in all kinds of situations. The result is that, now, he has the ability to act as a canine counselor. 
    Currently, CSAT staff utilize the dogs in a number of ways:
    • To calm students down.  Studies have indicated that the presence of a dog causes a significant and immediate reduction in blood pressure and anxiety.  Students that are having a "meltdown" or reacting negatively to a stressful situation benefit from having Gus around.
    • To "draw out" shy or distraught students.  Youths who are reluctant to open up to adults often love to have a dog around to pet and, in some cases, confide in.  Students who are going through a trying time at home oftentimes seek out a caring, non-judgemental pet.
    • To reach ESL (English as a Second Language) students.  Love for "man's best friend" seems to be an international language.  Youths who may not be so comfortable with their English certainly understand how to pet and be appreciated by an animal.
    • As a reward.  Oftentimes, classrooms who are safe, respectful and responsible, or SOAR, are rewarded with some time with Gus as an incentive.
    • As a teaching tool.  One way to teach an unforgettable lesson is to create a memory, and Gus's participation is sure to do just that!

    Gus is a wonderful (and important) members of the "CSAT family." For more information on Gus and his road to become a therapy dog, check out this website story!