Mental Health Menu

  • Dogs Connect Program: Whole School Approach to Connectedness and Wellbeing


    Tier 1: Positive Mental Health Promotion

    Program Description

    Dogs Connect is an online training program to help introduce a wellbeing dog into a school. A wellbeing dog has positive emotional and social impacts and supports mental health and wellbeing.

    The program helps create an ongoing connection between a school, community and their wellbeing dog. The program includes twelve modules covering a number of topics to integrate a wellbeing dog in their school. Dogs Connect can help schools source a dog on request if required.

    Detailed Cost

    Dogs Connects’ online program is priced at $7,700 (inc. GST) and runs for a minimum of six months. Annual Accreditation Renewal and Refresher Training is priced at $770 (inc. GST).

    Should Dogs Connect be requested to source a dog for the school, this additional cost shall be incurred by the school.

    Implementation Considerations

    Target population: School staff across primary and secondary schools.

    Program adaptability: The content of the program can be adapted to meet the needs of participating schools, as determined through consultation with school staff prior to commencement.

    Staffing: A minimum of two staff members are required to be enrolled in the program.

    Training requirements: The time requirements are 12 hours for the on-demand modules and 12 hours of related tasks. This can be undertaken over a minimum of six months, averaging one hour a week.

    Factors to consider: Internet connection and devices are required.

    Australian context: The program has been developed and applied in Australia.

    Strength of Evidence

    Level 2: Supported by expert opinion or evidence for practice

    Geographic Location


    Intended Outcomes

    * Increased attendance
    * Reduced anxiety
    * Improved peer-to-peer and staff-to-student relationships
    * Reduced behavioural incidents
    * Improvement in social and emotional regulation
    * Improved capacity for empathy
    * Increased emotional literacy