KingKids welcome therapy dog Molly
Early childhood education and care (ECEC) provider KingKids, who operate five services in Victoria, recently introduced the newest member of their team – a Sheepadoodle (Sheepdog x Standard Poodle) named Molly.
Molly recently passed her intense assessment to become a Therapy Dog at Lead the Way Institute and will now become a part of the KingKids family. During Molly’s training, she spent 12 months attending a school spending time in a classroom and forming relationships with the children.
KingKids have chosen to introduce Molly to their services after learning that therapy dogs can reduce stress psychologically and increase attachment responses that trigger oxytocin – a hormone that increases trust in humans. Therapy dogs have also been shown to teach empathy and social skills, reduce anxiety in children, be soothing and increase motivation for learning.
Molly has been certified along with Sally, one of the KingKids owners, meaning she can only attend the services when she is accompanied by Sally. She has slowly been introduced into the services, spending a small amount of time with the children to begin with which will increase over time.
“They make a great team, we will ensure that Molly is always enjoying her job as a Therapy Dog and will give her days off whenever she needs it,” a spokesperson said.
The KingKids educators will work alongside Molly to provide broader learning opportunities for all of the children, appreciating both Molly’s placid and gentle nature, along with her hypoallergenic coat, which has been bred to be more compatible with people with allergies.
Molly does not shed hair and is frequently groomed, having a full vet check every 6 months, being fully immunised and up to date with all of her parasite and worming treatments.
To learn more about the value of dogs in early childhood programs, please see here.