By Staff Sgt. Robert Cloys
50th Space Wing Public Affairs
It’s about respect.
Respecting, loving and caring for animals may seem like the obvious thing to do, but for the 5-12 year olds who received a visit from the Humane Society, it was an important lesson.
Lynda Grove, education manager for the Pikes Peak region, came to visit the Child Development Center Feb. 8 with a bag of educational props, some important information and a few furry friends.
“I just wanted to give them the scope of all the things you have to do with a pet. Not only do you have to feed them, but you have to stick with caring for them,” said Grove. “I wanted to give them little tidbits of stuff here and there.”
The tidbits included tips on how and when to feed animals, grooming, proper shelter, what to do if their pet gets lost, the proper tags to put on pets and how to love and understand their animals.
“It was great to have the Humane Society come out to the School Age Program,” said Alex Allen, the school age program coordinator at the CDC. “The message for this visit was to help the kids understand the importance of basic care needs for household animals so that they can assist their parents at home using the skills they learned here. We know how stressful life can be for everyone, and pets often add a lot of extra work to the day.”
Grove’s emphasis though was on respect.
“With respect, everything else kind of falls into place,” she said.
That’s also the message she hoped to get across by bringing a rabbit, guinea pig and pet rat with her to show the class. The children were allowed to have hands on time with the animals after the lesson and passed each of the animals around in a circle.
“Seeing the children so engaged is always a joy. I believe that this visit will help everyone become better pet owners,” said Allen.
Groves said getting the children to think about how they would feel if they were the animals she brought in for the class or the animals they already had at home, is her goal.
Families of the CDC children donated pet care items to the Humane Society and plan to collect donations throughout the rest of the school year.
Additionally, the Humane Society has other educational classes coming up for young children who would like to learn more. For more information, call 473-1741.