Puppy love eases Florida students' pain

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by Judith Van Duinen

Posted on March 2, 2018

Puppy love eases Florida students' pain

 

Therapy dogs were on hand when the AS classes resumed at the Florida school where a gunman killed 17 people.

The therapy dogs greeted the survivors of the Florida school shooting after they returned to class for the first time since the shooting.

The Humane Society of Broward County tweeted “Today our therapy dogs welcomed the students back to school,”. They also sent photos of the students patting the pooches inside of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

“They participated in classes all day, made lots of new friends and provided unconditional love and comfort,” the agency said while using the hashtag #MSDStrong.

“It’s an honor to be part of the comfort and healing process at MSD with their amazing students, principal, and faculty.”

Teachers and students were thrilled with the dogs who appeared to be a great help for the school, who was still recovering from the shooting on Valentine’s Day.

 “My first period class with our borrowed therapy dog, Woody,” tweeted teacher Sarah Lerner.

According to the US Humane Society, the dogs “work with a handler to provide affection and comfort to members of the public”.

Working with schools, libraries or visiting the elderly in nursing homes are included.

Dr. Rosalind Osgood, the school board member, told a local news station that the dogs will remain on campus for the foreseeable future.

He explained: “One mother said, ‘You know, everybody is here today, but how long will [the therapy dog program] take place?’ And I said, ‘As long as we need it to,’’

The first day back after a former student allegedly killed 17 people with an AR-15 on Valentine’s Day, the students and teachers arrived early at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

A long line of cars was circled around the school and dozens of television trucks and vehicles were camped out nearby when the students, parents, and staff were ushered through a security cordon, past a “Welcome Eagles” banner and a walkway lined with flowers, photographs, and other memorials. Some were returning despite severe gun wounds, but even those who weren’t hit by bullets spoke of an emotional trauma.

Student Casey Sherman, who walked in with her boyfriend, said “We did go through a tragedy,” “It was terrible but if you let it stop you ... it’s not how you go down, it’s how you get back up.”

 

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