|A kid reads a story to a dog in a Missouri shelter. |
The dog becomes less anxious as a result.
They just sit children down in front of the shelter dogs and have the kids read books to the pups.
According to the animal advocacy site TheDodo, the Missouri idea is called the Shelter Buddies Reading Program. The kids' storytime readies the dogs for foreer homes, while the kids learn empathy for pets, and sharpen their reading skills.
The kids draw the interest of shy and nervous shelter dogs, helping them feel comfortable around people and make them more appealing for families who might want to adopt them.
|Kids read to dogs in a Missouri animal shelter to help|
calm them down and make them more adoptable.
The children are also trained to give the dogs treats when the pups calm down or show interest in the story times, as a way to reinforce the good behavior.
The kids, ages six to 15 are also trained to read a dog's body language to tell whether they are anxious or stressed out. They can then calmly read to settle the dogs down.
As program director Jo Klepaki told TheDodo:
|A kid and a shelter dog enjoy reading time together.|
I have a feeling this idea will spread to a lot of Humane Societies and animal shelters across the nation.
And we will be a better place because of it.
Here's a video of kids reading to the dogs back around Christmastime. It's a very sweet video: