Warm Fuzzy Salute

Badgerland Animal Reading and Comfort Companion at work.Who We Are
Badgerland Animal Reading and Comfort Companions (B.A.R.C.C.) is an all-volunteer, 501c3 non-profit organization formed in early 2010. Our mission is to enrich the lives of people of all ages through the use of Delta Society® Pet Partner teams and Reading Education Assistance Dogs® (R.E.A.D.®). Based in Dodge County, our teams serve a growing list of area schools, libraries, care centers, and hospitals.

What We Do
We are often asked what exactly we and our dogs do. Simply put, we bring the healing power of pets to the people we serve. Therapy dogs just make life better. But how, exactly? Here is an example of the tremendous differences our canine teammates make: On a multi-colored rug in a quiet corner of the school library, a second grade student lays on his tummy, reading aloud from a book. Next to him, a buffcolored labradoodle named Colleen cuddles in close and sniffs the open page. Colleen is a registered therapy dog and also a Reading Education Assistance Dog (R.E.A.D. ®). The student she shares her blanket with has been selected by his teacher to be a part of the school’s R.E.A.D.® program – a program created by Intermountain Therapy Animals and designed to give young readers a chance to build literacy skills and confidence. Each week, he meets one-on-one with Colleen or another therapy dog, such as Molly, a sweet little black and white Staffordshire terrier mix. Today, as he reads to Colleen, he smiles and frequently reaches over to pat her head as she listens. He frequently stumbles over words or struggles to read, but Colleen stays close – a nonjudgmental ally that allows him a safe place to practice and learn.
Badgerland Animal Reading & Comfort CompanionsWho We Serve
Presently, B.A.R.C.C. teams visit several schools, libraries, and health-care facilities throughout Dodge County and the surrounding areas. In schools and libraries, scouts groups and special events, our therapy dogs serve as R.E.A.D. ® volunteers and ambassadors for our Dog Safety Programs. In health-care facilities, they provide comfort and emotional and physical benefits to residents and facility staff. Visits from our therapy dogs are often the brightest moments in the day of those they serve.
How You Can Help

  • Become a member of B.A.R.C.C. As the awareness of therapy animal benefits spreads, the list of groups and organizations requesting our services grows, so we are always seeking additional teams and members. Each of our members has completed the training and evaluation necessary to becoming a Pet Partner team. We provide ample support and guidance to new members and those interested in pet therapy. Any breed or mix of breeds can make a good therapy pet. And not only dogs – but cats, horses, rabbits, birds, and guinea pigs have all had successful careers in pet therapy. Don’t have a pet? We have an ever-growing list of ways to contribute – with or without a pet.
  • Donate. B.A.R.C.C. is an all-volunteer, 501c3 non-profit organization. Donations are tax-deductible and are used by B.A.R.C.C. for training and materials for our programs and events.
  • Educate yourself and others, and help to spread the word. Let others know about our group and the many benefits of therapy animals. Visit Delta Society® at http://www.deltasociety.org to learn more about the organization and Pet Partners. Learn about the R.E.A.D.® program developed by Intermountain Therapy Animals at http://www.therapyanimals.org/R.E.A.D.html. For more information about B.A.R.C.C., please contact Kim Waugus (920-887-0790; kwaugus@yahoo.com) or Trina Severson (trinaseverson@yahoo.com; 920-219-9304) or visit our Web site at http://www.barcc-wi.org.