New program gives children a chance to practice their reading skills while helping shelter dogs learn to socialize. What a win/win situation this is!
The Humane Society of Missouri started this program for a couple of reasons.
Dogs living in a shelter tend to exhibit signs of anxiety. Most are rescue dogs and have been through plenty of bad things in their lives, and they often don’t understand what’s happening to them. The shelter wanted to find something to comfort them.
There are many children in the area that wanted to help and make a difference for these dogs.
And a side benefit: Children can practice their reading skills while doing something special for the dogs.
Hearing a child reading really helps to calm the dogs. This program has made a big difference.
Dogs are more likely to get adopted if they come up to the window and interact with the potential adopters rather than hiding or cowering in the back of the kennel.
When children sit in front of the kennel and just read to the dogs, it helps them socialize and get used to being around people. Then tend to come up to the window more often and learn to be around people.
Children ages 6 to 15 are invited into the program. They are required to complete a 10-hour training program to learn how to read dogs’ body language, what it’s like for a dog to be in a shelter environment, what to expect when they see the dogs, and how to interact with them.
Continue to next page for the amazing video and to learn more about what this incredible program is doing for both the dogs and the children…