Read To Dog


A certified member of our Pet Therapy and Humane Education team can participate in any of the three programs we offer:  Pet Therapy, Humane Education and Read to Dogs.

The Read to Dogs program provides a non-judgmental environment for children to better their reading skills, develop a love of reading and gain confidence in their reading abilities, while raising their self-esteem.  We coordinate with local libraries and schools to provide certified Pet Therapy animals for each child to read aloud to, in a private one-on-one interaction.

These programs are initiated by the library or school and the children sign up ahead of time.  The librarian or teacher selects age-appropriate books for the children and monitors the session. However, the actual reading is between the dog (with the handler) and the child, while all others are kept at a distance to give the reader privacy.

The visit usually lasts an hour or less, but the needs of the pet always take priority. The sessions at the libraries are mostly held in the late afternoon, once school lets out.  They normally start between 3 and 4 pm.  The times for the visits to schools vary, but are always during the school day. We ask that you commit to a minimum of 2 visits per month in any combination of Pet Therapy, Humane Education and Read to Dogs.

In order to participate in Read to Dogs, please be aware of the following:

  1. Your pet must be very well behaved and comfortable around large numbers of children and adults, including handicapped and those with special needs.  While we ask the librarian/teacher to supervise their children, there may be times when you are walking through the school or library to get to the reading room, so there may be others around.
  2. Your pet must be very well behaved and comfortable around other dogs, as these visits often include multiple pet therapy animals. Dogs may not come in contact with other therapy animals before, during or after any visit.
  3. The dog will likely be sitting or lying down on the floor with you and the reader. You may be in a chair as long as you can properly oversee your dog. Your dog must be able and comfortable lying down or sitting for the entire time.  They do not take breaks unless the dog is in distress.
  4.  You are not expected to teach the child to read, but if he/she is having a problem with a word you can certainly help pronounce it.
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