The Shelter Buddies Reading Program pairs kids age 6 to 15 with fearful dogs to prepare them for life in a forever home. After completing a 10 hour training program, the kids sit in front of a she dog’s kennel and read to them from a book.
“We wanted to help our shy and fearful dog without forcing physical interaction with them to see the positive effect that could have on them,” program director Jo Klepacki told The Dodo. “Ideally that shy and fearful dog will approach and show interest. If so, the kids reenforce that behavior by tossing them a treat.”
Kids read to shelter dogs not only to keep them company but also to make them more adoptable
“Reading to the dogs helps to bring comfort to and reduce the anxiety of shelter pets”
“When children tell stories to the dogs, it also helps them develop their own reading skills”
“Hearing a child reading can really calm those animals. It is incredible, the response we’ve seen in these dogs.”
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