For five and a half years PAWS to Read has partnered with Boone County Public Library to provide opportunities for children and families to read to a licensed therapy dog. Consisting of 12 licensed therapy dogs from a variety of breeds, the PAWS to Read group has devoted over 300 hours of service to this library program.
In that time, over 4,000 library customers have enjoyed spending time with the PAWS to Read dogs, who have earned the thanks and gratitude of many loyal fans. The PAWS to Read dogs are:
Tim and Shelley Rose are the enthusiastic creators and coordinators of the PAWS to Read group and reading program. They organize the group, maintain the schedule, and ensure that at least 4 dogs visit the library for every PAWS to Read session. Tim and Shelley are the heart and soul of the group and have devoted countless hours to providing a joyous reading opportunity at the library for children and families.
Since 2008, from one to four days per month, the PAWS to Read dogs have visited various Boone County Public Library locations. During a typical two-hour session, 35 – 40 children visit to read to their favorite dog for about 15 minutes. When the children arrive at a PAWS to Read session, they eagerly grab books, snuggle down in chairs or on the floor, and escape into the joy of reading to their favorite canine friends. Many children have developed special relationships with particular dogs and their owners and visit the library for many sessions to spend time with their very special friends.
Sadly, time does pass and we all grow a little older. Our PAWS to Read friends are no exception. After more than five years and over 300 hours of faithful service, the dogs are ready to slow down. On Saturday, November 15, 2014, our PAWS to Read friends will make their final appearance at the library. To honor their years of service and dedication, the library would like to invite PAWS to Read fans to stop by the Main Library and say goodbye. Most of the dogs will be present and would love to see their library friends. Thanks to a generous donation by a PAWS to Read fan, honorary service plaques will be presented to each dog, and refreshments will be provided. Hours for the farewell celebration are 10:00-12:00. Anyone wishing to schedule a 15-minute reading time may do so by calling the Main Library at 859-342-2665. We hope you can join us in bidding our PAWS to Read friends a fond farewell.
Elaine Demoret has worked at Boone County Public Library for six years as a Youth Services Associate in the Children’s Department. Her mission is to bring quality children’s programs and performers to the library from a variety of community resources.