The Missouri Humane Society’s Shelter Buddies Reading Program pairs kids aged 6 to 15 with scared and traumatised dogs to prepare them for adoption.
After completing a 10-hour training program, the children sit in front of a dog’s kennel and read to them.
“We wanted to help our shy and fearful dogs without forcing physical interaction with them to see the positive effect that could have on them,” program director Jo Klepacki told The Dodo.
“Reading to the dogs helps to bring comfort to and reduce the anxiety of shelter pets.”
“Ideally that shy and fearful dog will approach and show interest. If so, the kids reenforce that behavior by tossing them a treat.”
“When children tell stories to the dogs, it also helps them develop their own reading skills.” The project also “nurtures empathy in children” and “teaches high energy dogs that calm behavior is desirable.”
Watch the video below for more on this amazing initiative:
To learn more and donate to this awesome program, head over to the Missouri Humane Society’s website.