As part of the PAHS Critter Club curriculum, students learn about ways in which working animals contribute to the community’s welfare and wellbeing usually through interaction with different kinds of service dogs. The Critter Club students in Beyond the Bell at Landels Elementary in Mountain View were introduced to a service dog on Thursday, May 18. This dog is Yara.
Yara, an older male Labrador Retriever, is the personal service dog of Marv Tuttle, a spokesperson for Canine Companions for Independence (CCI), which trains service dogs. (Marv is also the Participant Coordinator for Day of Discovery Scuba For Special Needs Kids at the Monterey Bay Aquarium—he is an experienced scuba diver). Marv introduced the students to CCI and the rigorous training the organization gives future service dogs.
Yara is a mobility service dog who helps Marv by retrieving objects, opening doors, and guarding Marv’s home. He is nearly always on the job! Marv and Yara provided examples of commands, and with Yara’s help, Marv reviewed basic concepts of dog care, behavior around service dogs, and meeting and greeting friendly dogs. At the close of the session, the students had the opportunity to pet Yara and pose with him for photos.
PAHS thanks the students for their kind donation of pet food, which has already been distributed among cat feeders and dog adoption groups.