Read with a Dog

Read with a Dog

2nd & 4th Sundays from 2:00-4:00pm
August 23-December 13

No registration required. Children sign up for a 15-20 minute slot at the Children’s Desk when they arrive.

young girl reading with QuincyWhat is it? The Read with a Dog program improves children’s reading and communication skills by employing a powerful method: reading to a dog. But not just any dog. Read dogs are registered therapy animals who volunteer with their owner/handlers as a team, going to schools, libraries and many other settings as reading companions for children.

But why dogs? Learning to read is sometimes frustrating or intimidating for children. Animals are the ideal reading companions because they help increase relaxation and lower blood pressure, listen attentively, and do not judge, or laugh, or criticize. They allow children to proceed at their own pace and the experience is less intimidating than reading aloud in front of classmates or adults.

The program also increases participants’ self-esteem, and gives children the opportunity to practice and enjoy reading in a fun environment.

Child reading with a dog

Who can do it? Children who would like to participate should be able to read on their own, but there are no qualifications for reading level. If children who cannot read want to participate, a parent or sibling can read a book to the child and dog together. Dog handlers will be with the dogs and can also help children warm up to the animals and get started reading. Children’s librarians will supply books that children can choose from, or children can bring their own books from home.

The Read with a Dog program is offered free of charge. No registration is required – just sign up at the Children’s Desk when you arrive.

Read with a Dog Volunteers

Belinda, with Bixby (Golden Retriever) Deb, with Max (Cocker spaniel/Golden retriever mix) Krystal, with Jupiter  Julie, with Libby (Weimaraner)  Susan, with Pedro or Rojo (Bichon, hypoallergenic) or Mocha (Schipperke) If you have a therapy dog and are interested in volunteering, please contact us at 785-776-4741 ext. 125.

young boy reading with Quincy