©  2017 Perfect Paws Pet Ministry @ All Saints Episcopal Church of the North Shore
The Healing Comfort of Dogs All Volunteer, Certified and Insured~ Now on Boston’s North Shore ~ Therapy Dog Team Certification Workshops/Visits / Classroom and Library Engagements and … Petministrytherapydogs is on-call to serve as a calming, supportive presence in situations of crisis and trauma. “Not only are dogs wonderful companions, but they are also great for people's mental and physical health. All Saints Episcopal Church of the North Shore, and its Perfect Paws Pet Ministry, is proud to partner with Dog B.O.N.E.S. Therapy Dogs of Massachusetts to offer workshops for certification and team deployment for communities north of Boston. We also offer the Happy Readers Dog Tutors program for reluctant, beginner, and second language readers. All of our teams have completed the required "Introduction to Becoming a Therapy Dog Team" certification workshop and are current in their Dog B.O.NE.S. membership. Our dogs are required to be up-to-date on veterinary health checks and inoculations. Dog inoculation records and the Dog B.O.N.E.S. insurance declaration are available to all the sites we visit upon request. All Therapy Dog teams are volunteers and there is never any charge for our visits.  Our teams spend time with patients and clients, students, faculty and staff in different venues to share the love of our dogs, bring calm and joy and a bit of normalcy to environments that can often be stressful. We also offer support -- through animal assisted therapy -- to people in therapeutic environments (i.e. hospitals and rehab), in schools and special needs programs (i.e. beginner or reluctant readers in libraries and schools, and adult daycare).  Dog B.O.N.E.S.Therapy Dog Workshops  The workshop, "Introduction to Becoming a Therapy Dog Team," is offered several times a year at All Saints Episcopal Church of the North Shore, in partnership with Dog B.O.N.E.S. Therapy Dogs of MA.   To participate, dogs and handlers are expected to demonstrate basic obedience skills before attending this workshop. Dogs must be able to do a loose leash walk, and execute a sit, down, stay and heel on the handlers' command. Dogs that jump up, nip or mouth are not appropriate for therapy dog work.   Dogs and handlers that successfully complete the workshop are invited to join and may begin visiting. (Annual Dog B.O.N.E.S. membership dues are $25).  (Visit Dog B.O.N.E.S. workshop schedule page to find out when the next series of classes will be held. All classes -- which usually number 8 humans and their dogs -- are booked through Dog B.O.N.E.S. They fill quickly and are first come, first served.)  
OUR VISIT OFFERINGS: Meet our Therapy Dogs A program for children, young adults and elders, "Getting to Know Therapy Dogs" is designed to be age-appropriate and generally involves several handlers with several different breeds of dogs. This visit offering Includes an overview of therapy dog work, venues visited, how to become certified, the health benefits of dogs, and the joy of visiting. Q&A and doggie-loving time are also part of this program. Visits to Health Care Centers, Assisted Living and Nursing Homes Dogs and handlers travel through the facilities to give residents and patients a few minutes each of "patting" time and joy. Our Happy Readers Dog Tutors visit options include: Children in groups (1 hr. session), who have signed up in advance. Children sit in a semi-circle, gathered around the dogs and handlers, and take turns reading out loud to the dogs and to each other. (Usually five children and two reading dog teams.) Individual reading sessions (15 min. each) with beginner or reluctant readers.   Dogs are Our Friends! Making the Relationship Between Dogs and Children Safe and Rewarding. Dogs are wonderful companions for children, who can learn so much about responsibility by caring for them. This hour- long session demonstrates the proper etiquette of meeting, interacting with and caring for a new dog, and also covers breed basics of visiting dogs, the satisfying experience (for dog and human) of positive training, and the joys of rescue and adoption. Mini-curriculum for after school enrichment programs: Introduction to dogs Children reading to the dogs Storytelling and story reading: handlers offer chapter book readings Coloring/drawing/creativity: take-home coloring pages, provided by Happy Readers, representing different breeds visiting Children are also encouraged to draw free-hand pictures of the dogs to take home. Each child earns a Good Reading Certificate at the end our time together, certifying that he/she has become an official "Happy Reader."