THERAPY dog Amadeus has a date with history as he prepares to travel to Buckingham Palace to represent a North-East school at a special canine salute to The Queen.

Amadeus, a two-year-old cockapoo, has been “a massive hit” since he started working with special needs children at Skerne Park Academy, in Darlington.

But, on October 9, he’ll have a well-deserved day off so he can catch a train to London to be part of a doggy day of remembrance in honour of animal-lover, the late Queen Elizabeth II.

The tribute, which has become known as “The Corgi Parade”, will see processions of pooches – mainly Corgis but other dogs too – at Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle, Sandringham, and Balmoral.

Amadeus – Hammy for short – is booked in for the event at Buckingham Palace and will be there with owner Jo Beaton, a Pathways teacher for special needs provision at the Darlington primary school, along with assistant teacher, Sandra Bower.

Clair Gooding, head teacher at Skerne Park Academy, said: “Amadeus has become a highly valued member of staff at our school, and he will be the perfect ambassador for us at the tribute to Her Majesty. It’s a moment in history and we’re so proud to have him representing us.”

Owner, Miss Beaton, added: “He’s become a real star and has the perfect nature to be a therapy dog. He comes into school every day and loves to cuddle up with the children and sit on their knees.

“Some of the children have high emotional needs and may not know how to cope with their feelings, but Amadeus is a real calming influence. He’s been a massive hit with the children and the staff.”

Amadeus was the unexpected result of a “lockdown romance” between Miss Beaton’s cockapoo, Belle, and a friend’s cockapoo, called Teddy.

“It was all a bit of a surprise, and we ended with up a litter of six puppies,” explained Miss Beaton.

When the puppies were born, she suggested the idea of training one of them as a therapy dog. The school agreed and picked Amadeus because all the others were black and he was brown, so he stood out.

Now, he goes in every day, has a bed in one of the classrooms as well as in the head teacher’s office, and is “thoroughly spoilt” with treats. As well as working with special needs children, he also has the run of the school and mixes with all the pupils.

“He’s already had his hair cut and I’ll probably get him a smart new school hoodie for the occasion,” said Miss Beaton.