© 2021 West Virginia Public Broadcasting
Telling West Virginia's Story
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

New Therapy Dog Arrives for First Day of Work at Mary C. Snow Elementary

Kara Lofton/ West Virginia Public Broadcasting
Pre-K students at Mary C. Snow Elementary School meet Axelle for the first time

Students at Mary C. Snow Elementary School on Charleston's West Side got to meet the school's new therapy dog Monday. Two years ago, the students said goodbye to their beloved friend Paca, who had been one of the state’s first therapy dogs to work at a school. Paca had to leave because her owner, the school’s librarian, took a job out of state. 

Now, two years later, Paca’s successor has arrived. His name is Axelle.

On Monday morning, the dog's handler, music teacher Walter Tucker, introduced Axelle to students for the first time. The dog smiled, wagged his tail, and even licked some faces on his first day of work. 

Credit Kara Lofton/ WVPB
Axelle arrives to work at Mary C. Snow elementary school

Axelle has been trained to specialize in helping children cope with emotional stress and trauma, and to encourage students to enjoy learning. He’ll be working with all of the students, but especially with special needs students.

The students, teachers, community members, and even students in neighboring Lincoln County, helped raise thousands of dollars to purchase Axelle from a training facility in Kansas. It was the same facility where Paca came from, and they are also the same breed and color, a black English Labrador.




WVPB is local news, education, music, and entertainment for West Virginia.
Your donation today will help keep us strong and vital.