Thursday, December 25, 2014


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Saratoga County

Man’s best friend heads to the classroom

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SCOTIA, N.Y. -- Man's best friend is coming to one local elementary school to serve as a therapy dog.

Sadie made a big splash Wednesday afternoon when she was introduced to students at Sacandaga Elementary School in Scotia. The two-year-old golden retriever is owned by Jeannine Dowdle, a fifth grade teacher at the school.

Sadie was recently certified as a therapy companion, after the school's principal suggested the idea.

Dowdle says research has shown reading to a dog can improve student's test scores. She hopes Sadie teaches the students about responsibility and love.

“Even though she's here to emotionally support them, they support her, so I think it's a great lesson of giving both ways,” Dowdle said.

“I'm hoping to bring her different classes, read with her and do math facts with her,” said fifth grade student Erin Turner.

“She’s really sweet and I love her and she really means a lot to me because she's in my class,” said fifth grade student Shelby McNamara.

And students might be getting another furry friend. Sadie's brother, Micah, is also training to be a therapy dog. He could be introduced to the students in the spring. ClientIP:, UserAgent: CCBot/2.0 ( Profile: TWCSAMLSP