Doggone Safe relaunches educational "Be A Tree" program
Program aims to teach school children about canine body language, increase understanding between dogs and kids, and reduce the number of dog bites
The new look Be A Tree program features a streamlined logo, a revamped website, and an updated teacher kit for presenters to ensure a consistent and accurate delivery. The program and kit have been developed and reviewed by canine behavior and training experts, and are tailored for classroom teachers and registered Be A Tree presenters to deliver via desktop computer, laptop, projector, or posters and interactive, educational sessions.
The program also features a host of clean, new, educational graphics depicting examples of typical canine body language -- such as fear, anger, anxiety, happiness and stress -- created by renowned canine artist, Lili Chin, and focuses on a range of fun, innovative activities for participating children, including learning to "speak dog," being a detective and searching for clues in a dog's behavior, and an interactive game featuring photos of dogs in a variety of emotional states that asks the question: "Would you pet this dog?" based on what the children have learned during the presentation.
Doggone Safe was established with the mandate of increasing child safety around dogs and to provide support for dog bite victims. Many of its initiatives originated from a coroner's jury recommendations into the death of eight year-old Courtney Trempe, who was mauled to death by a neighbor's dog in Stouffville, Ontario in 1998. On itswebsite, Doggone Safe states that half of all children are bitten by a dog "by the time they are 12 years old," and that a "good percentage of these bites are from a dog the child knows." The Be A Tree program aims to promote awareness of canine behavior and help reduce these numbers.
Since its inception, Doggone Safe presenters have educated over 1 million children in more than 30 countries about how to stay safe around a dog. Hundreds of thousands more people have been reached and influenced through the organization's educational materials and social media campaigns. Doggone Safe continues to encourage interested parties to become an official Be a Tree presenter and help educate their local community, and provides full support via a host of educational and marketing materials.
"We have streamlined the Be A Tree program to make sure it looks colorful, attractive and appealing while retaining the core educational component," said Doggone Safe president, Niki Tudge. "Our focus is primarily to help children be more aware of what a dog is trying to communicate through his body language and provide them with strategies they can use if they do not feel safe. By doing this, we hope to pre-empt and ultimately avoid situations where a dog is pushed beyond the threshold where he feels comfortable, to the point where he feels his only option is to bite to escape the situation. Our fun, interactive graphics are the ideal way to convey this message and we believe children will find them striking, enjoyable and easy to remember. We look forward to continuing to educate communities and increasing public awareness on canine behavior, and helping enhance the lives of pet dogs by raising the standard of educational information available."
About Doggone Safe
Doggone Safe is a 501(c)3 registered charity in the US, with members and presenters in more than 30 countries.
Doggone Safe's mission is to promote education initiatives for the purpose of dog bite prevention and increased child safety around dogs, and to provide support for dog bite victims. These educational goals originate from the recommendations of a coroner's jury inquest into the mauling death of eight year old Courtney Trempe in Stouffville, Ontario in 1998. Doggone Safe is the pioneer of the "Be A Tree" program that teaches children worldwide a simple but effective way to behave if ever they feel threatened or uncomfortable with a dog.
Be A Tree: http://www.doggonesafe.com/
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