Furry new pupil learning lots at village primary school
- Credit: Sonya Duncan
A new pupil has joined the class in a village primary school - and he's slightly hairier than the others.
Six-month-old Hugo started Old Buckenham Primary School in September this year, and has been delighting the children - and staff - ever since.
Hugo, a Cockapoo - a mix between a Cocker Spaniel and a poodle - is the new school dog, and is set to become a regular feature of Old Buckenham Primary, near Attleborough.
Looked after in the evenings and weekends by year four teacher Thomas Grass, Hugo was bought using physical education budget money due to the health benefits that dogs offer. The puppy was purchased late in July, so had the summer holidays to get his vaccines and a little toilet training before starting school in September.
Due to the large amount of discipline he will need to be a permanent school dog, Hugo has undergone rigorous training at Breckland Dog Training.
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On Monday, November 12, Hugo completed his most recent course, which was taken with lots of other dogs, and is now set for some one-on-one sessions to hone his discipline and prepare him for a school environment.
When he is older, it is hoped that Hugo can join a walking club, and also become a reading dog.
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Year four pupil Noah said: 'It's a really nice feeling when you get to cuddle him. It's the softest fur ever.'
Mr Grass said: 'Originally it was a weird and wonderful idea that you think will never actually come to pass.
'Then we started to think about what an impact it would have and how nice it would be to see something so different.
'Myself and the deputy head did some research, looking at what would be best for our school and to make sure the dog has a nice and happy life here.
'There are so many options for Hugo. He's got a soft temperament and he's extremely social. In the morning he helps greet the children in the playground as they arrive. If there are children outside in the afternoon the teacher takes him too.
'The children will start doing more with Hugo but for his sake and for their sake we're waiting for his training to complete. He's in an environment were he needs to be so well behaved. The children love Hugo, it's nice to see.
'It may seem like a really long process but he is going to here for years to come so we want to make sure he's trained properly.'