MARSHALL COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) — School can be a place where students enjoy learning and other activities with their friends, but it can also be a stressful time for kids as well.
Meet Governor, the two-year-old labradoodle, who spends his days working as a facility dog at Douglas Middle School in Marshall County.
Obviously, Governor enjoys all the belly rubs and treats he gets on the job, but he has other responsibilities. He is an important resource for kids helping build healthy attachments, decrease anxiety, reduce loneliness and more.
“Mental health is a big issue across the country, not just Alabama,” said Alabama state Representative Brock Colvin, who helped secure the dog through donations. “So, a lot of these kids, you know whether we don’t know or maybe don’t come from all the best opportunities, the best places. And so to have this opportunity here at school, where they can hang out with Governor reduces anxiety.”
“But like I said for not just students but teachers and administrators – school is stressful. Especially for middle schoolers, it’s a big time in their life. So for them to come and allow them the confidence to maybe open up to counselors and talk about issues going on in their life… I really appreciate the school’s investment in Governor,” Colvin added.
Teachers can sign up to have Governor come to their classrooms to listen to students read or present projects as well as provide comfort and interaction with the students.