Yesterday, local MP, Lucy Allan attended the Therapy Dogs Nationwide Parliamentary drop in session to learn more about the work of therapy dogs and their owners. Therapy Dogs Nationwide (TDN) is a volunteer-led charity that provides therapy dog sessions to places as diverse as schools, hospitals, prisons and nursing homes.
The event, held in the Attlee Suite in Westminster, allowed MPs to meet TDN volunteers and therapy dogs and hear about the all-round benefits of therapy dog sessions. Therapy dogs, selected for their temperament, provide a calming influence and reassuring presence during the sessions. In schools, TDN hold ‘Paws and Read’ sessions, where children respond positively to a calm, non-judgemental reading partner.
The Parliamentary drop in, sponsored by Jo Johnson, MP for Orpington, saw 15 dogs come to Parliament from across the UK. The event was attended by dozens of MPs and ministers, including Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock MP, Social Care Minister Caroline Dinenage MP and Prisons Minister Robert Buckland QC MP.
Speaking at Westminster, Lucy Allan said:
‘It was fantastic to see so many people enjoying Therapy Dogs Nationwide’s visit to Parliament. It was great to speak to the charity’s volunteers and learn about the benefits of therapy dog sessions. I enjoyed meeting the dogs who were all exceptionally well behaved and who provide a calming influence for all at their sessions.’