Friday, August 15, 2014

Girl Scouts Welcome Four-Legged Visitors at Summer Camp

Girl Scout Daisy Mackenna meets a
trained canine companion.
Girls who are attending Girl Scout Camp Imagimazing Summer Fun in Chesapeake welcomed a few four-legged visitors, as they are working on earning the badge from the Animal category this week at camp. Three dogs from Canine Companions for Independence, along with their trainers, came to the camp so that girls could see what goes into training assistance dogs and how these highly trained dogs enhance the lives of people with disabilities.

During their presentation, the dog trainers demonstrated the commands that they teach, including basic obedience commands, opening a door and retrieving dropped items, such as keys. Afterwards, the girls had the opportunity to pet the dogs, two of which were puppies in the early stages of their training process, and practice commands, including barking on command and shaking “paws.”

Girl Scout Brownie Erin meets
Bella, a puppy that is in training
to be an assistance dog.
Throughout the week at camp, girls have been engaged in a variety of activities where they have learned about what goes into caring for pets and keeping them healthy, investigated wild animal habitats and discussed how humans and animals can care for and help one another. The girls have also had the opportunity to participate in traditional camp activities, including swimming, archery and canoeing.

Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast offers nine weeks of day camp, including this week, at A Place for Girls, the regional program center and headquarters in Chesapeake. Girl Scout camp is a unique all-girl environment where girls develop leadership skills, learn how to work as part of a team and make new friends.