Kim Anderson, principal of Lynn Fripps Elementary, and Grade 4 student Alex Delamonte, share a laugh with Meggy. The two-year-old pup is the first autism support dog welcomed by the Langley School District.

Langley School District welcomes first autism support dog

A two-year-old pup accompanies a Grade 4 student to school at Lynn Fripps Elementary

There is no feeling like that of the after school bell ringing to mark the freedom from another school day, but for a young Langley boy the school day comes a little easier now that he has his two-year-old puppy for a desk-mate.

“She’s very chill. When I’m stressed I hug her until I calm down,” said Alex Delamonte, while the Grade 4 student welcomed hugs from his four-legged friend, Meggy.

READ MORE: Langley school promotes peace and understanding with development of outdoor classroom

Meggy is an autism support dog, the first welcomed by the Langley School District.

“This is one of the things she’s trained to do, we call it hugs. So she’ll climb up on his lap, or she’ll lie on top of him and she kisses him,” explained Carla Delamonte, Alex’s mom.

“Ours is extra licky,” said Alex. “Let’s just say we got the lickiest of the litter.”

The pup has been accompanying Alex to school at Lynn Fripps Elementary full time since classes resumed after winter break.

“If the school is not on board it can’t happen, so the school is integral,” said Carla.

“Kim [the school principal] has just been so open and welcoming and accommodating. If Kim weren’t on board I don’t know how this would work.”

The family completed an application process with the Lions Foundation of Canada Guide Dogs before they learned whether Meggy would be coming home with them in August.

“We heard about [the program] from other people in our autism community, and we’re the kind of parents where if there is anything that can possibly help our son, we explore it.” said Carla.

READ MORE: Three schools gathered the equivalent weight of a Hawaiian monk seal for recycling challenge

Once the foundation accepted the family’s application Carla was invited to Oakville, ON to complete 10 days of training.

“If you pass all the tests there you get to bring the dog home with you,” Carla said.

But before Alex could bring Meggy to school with him an assembly was held to inform the staff and students, said Kim Anderson, the school principal.

“Our whole school was trained with Meggy, not actually how to handle her, but to be aware of her, how not to distract her and how to have her part of our community,” she explained.

In just a few short months Meggy has already change Alex’s life.

“I think he’s a happier boy… generally happier, [he has] a better quality of life, [he’s] calmer [and] more resilient,” she said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Tree roots cause sewage chaos for Langley family

The Murrayville homeowners asked for the removal of a willow tree on Township land

VIDEO: Former Abbotsford resident giving away $1,000

Langley native Alex Johnson creates elaborate treasure hunt to give away cash

Lost Langley couple rescued from James Lake, near Kelowna

The rescue occurred Saturday, July 11

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

B.C. government prepares for COVID-19 economic recovery efforts

New measures after July consultation, Carole James says

COVID-19 exposure on Vancouver flight

The Air Canada 8421 flight travelled from Kelowna to Vancouver on July 6

Double homicide investigation leads Vancouver police to Chilliwack

A VPD forensics unit was in Chilliwack Saturday collecting evidence connected to East Van murders

Tree planters get help with COVID-19 protective measures

Ottawa funds extra transportation, sanitizing for crews

UPDATE: Abbotsford shooting victim was alleged ‘crime boss,’ according to court documents

Jazzy Sran, 43, was believed to have been smuggling cocaine across the border

Trudeau apologizes for not recusing himself from WE decision

He says his and his family’s longtime involvement with the WE organization should have kept him out of the discussions

Most Read