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  • Writer's pictureKaren Onail

Maisie Goes to School! BY: Tami B.

Maisie is a 2 year old rescue Golden Retriever and she loves people.  My husband and I both work in the public school systems in our area and have seen other schools have therapy dogs and  always wanted to do that, but between time and temperament with the dogs we had we never made it happen, until Maisie.  We did puppy class, beginner classes, a Canine Good Citizenship class and then we found Pawsitive Changes Therapy Dogs and our journey to becoming a therapy dog began in March of 2023.  Honestly, we didn’t know what it really meant to have a therapy dog at all, let alone at a school, but it has been an amazing learning experience.  Maisie goes with mom twice a week to the high school and she also goes with dad to some elementary and middle school visits.  There are students and classrooms that ask daily when Maisie will be back.

The excitement that you hear from students and staff alike when Maisie is walking down the hallway or walks into a room is infectious.  You can’t help but smile.  You can see the light in their eyes, you see the smiles on their faces, you can see the stress in their shoulders fall away as they come towards Maisie to get their pets in for the day.  When she walks through the lunch room the students all say “It’s Maisie”.  She is a very popular “staff” member.  The elementary students love to get on the floor with her and hug her and Maisie loves getting those hugs.  When you hear comments like “she makes my day so happy just to see her”, or “Maisie is my best friend”, or “she just makes me feel happy now”  that we have really found how much children and teens find having a therapy dog visit means.   Not only do students love her and respond to her love, but the staff needs her just as much and come running out of their room to pet her and give her a few minutes of love. And all Maisie has to do is stand there and get her pets and her scratches and she loves it.  Being a therapy dog team with Maisie has really made us appreciate those special small moments that a dog can bring to one person each day. 

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