Pets go to School
Pets go to school
Last week the pre-prep children of St Lukes in East Bundaberg were treated to a Pet PEP visit by “Basil” (a friendly 11 year old Labrador), Vet Cross Bundaberg Animal Hospital Vet, Dr Tim Hill and Vet Nurse Lynda Galloway.
Basil’s visit is a part of the QLD Australian Veterinarians Association’s Pet PEP Education Program that was launched in WA in 1991 in response to growing concern about the interaction between people and animals. With dramatic
increases in urbanisation, veterinarians were seeing increased incidents of animal mistreatment, dog attacks and irresponsible pet ownership.
The program now runs Australia wide and education officers coordinate the program at a state level supplying participants with a structured curriculum. Pet PEP helps primary school teachers integrate responsible pet care messages into their classroom
teaching, to teach our next generation about the responsibilities associated with owning animals and how to behave safely around them.
Pet PEP lessons are individually structured for each class depending on students’ age. The use of diagrams, photos and specimens provide the children with an interesting and interactive learning experience. “Basil” teaches the students
the importance of worming, flea prevention, vaccinations and basic animal care.
Vet Cross is excited to be a part of this valuable program and numerous primary school groups throughout the region have already requested Pet PEP visits by Vet Cross’s qualified veterinary nurse Lynda and teacher “Basil”.
Pet PEP co-ordinator Lynda says “the highlight of every visit is when Basil has his teeth brushed with chicken flavoured toothpaste”. “There is frequently a little voice from somewhere in the class that asks to try the toothpaste.”
St Lukes pre-prep teacher Mrs Nora Johnstone believes ”Giving children the opportunity to meet people from their community fosters connectedness and builds positive relationships. Having Dr Tim, Lynda and Basil visit the centre sparked lots
of conversation about the children’s own pets which has also lead to the children educating their parents about caring for their pets! Having Basil as part of the visit kept the children intrigued and asking questions and sharing their thoughts.
What a great experience!
To book a Pet PEP visit for your pre-school, child care centre or school go to petpep.ava.com.au or call Nurse Lynda at Vet Cross Animal Hospital on 07 41515044.