Puppy Love For Lincoln High

Lincoln High School’s newest student is a canine.  A four-legged furry friend named Squiggles.  Squiggles’ owner is Mrs. Abel, a new coordinator at LHS.  She brought therapy dog Squiggles to Lincoln High in late September after five months of Domesti-PUPS training earlier this year. The training was for a ten subject test that Squiggles and

Lincoln High School’s newest student is a canine.  A four-legged furry friend named Squiggles.  Squiggles’ owner is Mrs. Abel, a new coordinator at LHS.  She brought therapy dog Squiggles to Lincoln High in late September after five months of Domesti-PUPS training earlier this year.

The training was for a ten subject test that Squiggles and Abel took at the end of the training.  Some areas that Squiggles had to master were staying in a room of people without Mrs. Abel, not being afraid of new noises, reacting to being touched by new people in a positive way, and remaining calm while walking through a crowd of people.  After the basic training, there was one more additional day to become a therapy dog in a school.  Having successfully passed the test for working in a school Squiggles can now come to school whenever Mrs. Abel does.

Squiggles is able to roam the halls with Mrs. Abel for hall duty.  She also visits classes if the teacher asks.  Mrs. Abel brings squiggles in to school two to four days a week.

Mrs. Abel is required to have a dog clean up pack in case Squiggles has an accident.  She has to be clean all the time because of the environment she performs in.  There are also a separate list of rules from Domesti-PUPS that LPS requires a therapy dog to follow.

Junior Mimi Merliss says “Squiggles and I play fetch sometimes and it’s a nice distraction from the stress of school.”  Squiggles was brought to school to help relieve stress in students.  Mrs. Abel says she can already see a difference in students’ level of stress and see that they are calmer and happier.  Recently there was a student who became upset in the hallway during a class and Squiggles came to the scene and helped calm the student down by petting Squiggles.

Squiggles is not only helping students, but Mrs. Abel said that staff members have showed their appreciation for having Squiggles at school by saying how much they love having her there and stopping by to give Squiggles some attention.  Mrs. Abel hopes that, eventually, Squiggles will have a schedule where she can go visit classrooms for a whole period of the day.  For now, she loves the delighted faces of students that stop and say hello in the hallways.

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