Sign In

Hook Elementary Therapy Dog

August 26, 2020

tudents at Hook Elementary will now have a little furry friend to help them with stress and anxiety – thanks to Jack, and Anything’s Paws-ible.

Anything’s Paws-ible is a new therapy dog program supporting emotional well-being and cognitive development to local students.

Kristin Cashon began forming the non-profit organization over a year ago.

“I have on many levels and times in my life been affected by mental health, and now one of my children has mental health issues,” she explained. “My daughter was diagnosed with OCD and she is possibly early bipolar disorder. Through the process of getting her treatment and diagnosed, we were exposed to a therapy dog program at Cook Children’s and it made such an impact on her.”

Cashon saw how much the program helped her daughter and made it her goal to bring it to Stephenville ISD.

She approached SISD Superintendent Matt Underwood with the idea and handled the purchasing of the dogs and the training. Soon, the program was underway.

Now, Anything’s Paws-ible has a new therapy dog, a Schnoodle – schnauzer poodle – named Jack. He came from a family in Alabama who breeds and trains animals. Jack is hypoallergenic and doesn’t shed.

Jack will help students at Hook cope with testing and reading anxiety.

“Kids benefit from it whether they realize they do or not,” Cahson said. “One of the things that we target Hook for is they’re learning to read, so the ones who might have a speech impediment or even ESL, they can read aloud to the dog and the dog isn’t going to judge them for how they sound. They never have to feel under the microscope, so we thought reading to them in the library would be a good tool for them to get those readers to the next level.”

Jack will be in the library at Hook one day a week, until he gets comfortable, but will eventually be there every day.

Cashon said Jack will also be available to other schools in the district as needed.

“If they’re having problems with a student or if we have a crisis that happens at one of our schools, that is his first priority to just sit with that student, but the days he’s not doing that, he will be at Hook,” she said.

Cashon said the timing was perfect, with introducing Jack to students after a five-month break from school and the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus.

“It makes me emotional because I knew it would be important, but it’s really important to them and kind of gives them a reason to look forward to going to school again. They’re all worried about these masks and all these new procedures. It’s something kind of common that they can just enjoy…that part’s really special,” she said.

She said the organization’s long-term plan is to have a dog at every campus.

“We are going to work towards getting our second dog in the coming months since it takes about a year once we decide to do that,” Cashon said. “That’s the most important thing right now is to let everyone know that the program is still growing.”

Register your Dog Schedule a Visit

  • Recent News

    Students Get Therapy Dog

    When middle school students return to class on Jan. 11, they’ll find a new face at the door: Daisy. Daisy is a therapy dog and the personal pet of Rob Kreger, principal of the Rock L. Butler Middle School. The five-year-old golden retriever is not a school pet or mascot, but rather a working dog […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dogtor

    Last March, Caroline Benzel, a third-year medical student, began to notice the stress and discomfort her nurse friends were feeling from the pressures of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. “[Personal protective equipment] can be really rough on the skin,” Benzel, 31, tells PEOPLE. Benzel and her 3-year-old Rottweiler, Loki (who’s also a therapy dog) hatched a […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dog Pups

    When Stanley the miniature fox terrier’s owner passed away, the little dog started a ‘paw-some’ new role – bringing puppy love to some of the Gold Coast’s oldest residents. After Carinity Cedarbrook Diversional Therapist Julianne Staff adopted Stanley, he began visiting the aged care community at Mudgeeraba as a therapy dog. Therapy dogs help to […]

    Read more

    Therapy Dogs At School

    Those who own a dog can attest to their ability to lift mood, improve stress and bring joy by simply being there, unanswering, seemingly all-knowing and always delighted to see you.  Therapy animals are known for their calm and comforting nature, giving people a way to relax, de-stress and interact with a loving pet.  They […]

    Read more

    Wonder Dog

    For those of us with dogs, we know they quickly become major parts of the family. You live for and care for just like one of your own children, and one dog right here in Oklahoma City is beating the odds, and helping others recover as a therapy dog, despite all of the issues he’s […]

    Read more

    Scott And Charlie

    Cherokee Middle School students may do a little more “doodling” second semester starting this month (January), but also will improve their attendance marks because of a special attraction at the school, courtesy of Principal Scott Aden. Aden, an effective, caring administrator, has acquired and will house and handle a young female Golden Doodle (Charlie) that […]

    Read more

    Hope For Veterans

    E5 Therapy opened in April with a different way to help veterans in therapy. They offer canine-assisted therapy along with talk therapy to veterans and veterans’ families in Solano County. Owner Matthew Decker is a licensed clinical social worker in Northern California, focused on helping veterans achieve their mental health goals. Along with his team, […]

    Read more