Paws to Read: Never Doubt the Power of a Cute Dog

We have a lot of popular programs at Mentor Public Library, but few are as possible or fill up as quickly as Paws to Read.

Cara reads "How do Dinosaurs Go to School?" to Kody during Mentor Public Library's Paws to Read program.

Cara reads “How do Dinosaurs Go to School?” to Kody during Mentor Public Library’s Paws to Read program.

Some kids are shy about reading. It’s completely understandable. Reading can be difficult. (Adults forget this sometimes because we’ve been doing it so long.) And it can be intimidating to read in front of strangers.

So how do you get a reticent reader more comfortable?

Like most problems in life, this conundrum can be solved by adding puppies.

Nick scratches Caesar's belly as he reads.

Nick scratches Caesar’s belly as he reads.

With our Paws to Read program, we pair shy readers (between the ages of six and 12 years old) with therapy dogs who are trained to be good listeners.

The dogs help the kids relax so they can get used to reading to an audience.

And what do the dogs get out of it? Ear scratches, belly rubs, the adoration of grateful children. Pretty much everything a dog wants. (Maybe add a squirrel to bark at.)

Taylor reads "Pete the Cat" to Hannah.

Taylor reads “Pete the Cat” to Hannah.

If your child can read independently but doesn’t like to do it in front of other people, you might try signing them up for Paws to Read. (Especially if your son or daughter is also a dog lover.)

The next session is slated for Feb. 19 at our Main Branch and registration for it begins on Feb. 5.

Registration fills up quickly, so contact the children’s department at Mentor Public Library soon if you think you child could benefit from Paws to Read.

There is often a waiting list for the program once registration begins.

Haylee rests her head while Ella reads to her.

Haylee rests her head while Ella reads to her.

For more information on Paws to Read and other children’s programs at Mentor Public Library call (440) 255-8811 ext. 221.

And for more photos from our most recent Paws to Read session, visit our Facebook page.


Ed practices reading with Diva and her owner, Penny.

Ed practices reading with Diva and her owner, Penny.

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