Do you or your children read to your dog?
I ask this because studies have found that children who have trouble reading tend to improve after spending time reading to a dog. They’re often more relaxed around them, and don’t feel embarrassed if they make a mistake (dogs are just happy to hear a good story and don’t mind mistakes!)
The R.E.A.D. program (Reading Education Assistance Dogs) is one of the many programs that offers access to friendly, story-loving dogs.
According to one article I read, one little girl loved that her furry audience “usually licked me when I was stuck on a word. I think he wanted to give me encouragement to figure out that word.”
A boy said of his dog: “He does look at the story book, and he smiles a lot.”
Another stated that his canine friend understood the story “and he liked it.”
All this has me thinking:
I often read passages of novels and lines of poetry aloud.
Perhaps my dog, Baffi, has been listening more closely than I realized.
Aww, so cute. I adore my pets and although I have never read to them, I have sang and danced with and to them.
I love singing with my dog as well; one of life’s great pleasures!
Oh, Baffi! What a studious little darling!
My cats always come over when I read aloud, whether it’s my own writing to make sure the rhythm is working or another book for pronunciation practice and playing with character voices for fun. I used to think my cats sniffed my face and climbed in my lap because they thought I was speaking to them directly.
But, I think you’re on to something here. Pets like to read, too!
I’m sure your cats are taking in every word you say, Britt! They always look so attentive in your photos and videos. I wouldn’t be surprised if they were writing a novel of their own! (maybe called ‘a feline perspective’ in honor of your blog?)
Oh, Letizia! You’re a hoot!
You bring out my silly side 🙂
I didn’t know about this method to help children read….. ! It is fantastic… And of course the pictures are lovely! Bravo to Baffi for posing with her book!!
I agree, it’s so wonderful, and I love these photos of the children with the dogs too; they are so cute!
What a novel idea. No pun intended. I must forward this to my daughter who is now a stepmother to four. One child has difficulty reading and reading to their dogs might be of help.
What I love about this idea is that it is quite easy to try at home as well. Dogs so often lay down next to children reading anyway so your step-grandchild can just casually start reading aloud and see what happens….
My dogs and I were READ team members since 2004. My first therapy dog, Mohave passed in 2008 and Kiva took over. She retired the beginning of this year. I loved this program and miss it very much. I would recommend it to any therapy dog team.
How wonderful that you and your dogs were part of this great program that make such a difference in so many people’s lives!
I wonder if you continue reading to Kiva just because she has gotten used to it….
I have the grand kids read to her when they visit. That way she still feels important. lol
That’s great! I’m sure she appreciates it!
What a wonderful idea, that sounds a fun initiative!
I really do enjoy the thought that dogs can get into a story. I wonder if our cats would too, although they’ve never looked particularly impressed when I’ve read aloud. Perhaps they need the right book though.
Perhaps cats prefer non-fiction?
I’ll try reading some cooking recipes aloud, but I suspect they will think that they’re just going to get fed, no listening required. 🙂
That’s true, it might be hard for them to concentrate! 🙂
Letizia, I’m not really a dog-person, but I would happily become one if my learning-disabled nephew could be helped to read in any way. I have forwarded your post to my sister for further musing! Thanks for yet another fascinating angle on reading life 🙂
You are most welcome! I was surprised by how many of these types of programs are in existence now so they must be quite successful!
Yes indeed – really interesting. I had not heard about them before, but it will be good to follow up.
Adorable, and yes I do think that animals are a lot smarter than we give them credit for!
My dog surprises me with her intelligence every day!
This was very interesting. I think I ought to buy a pet dog. Nobody listens to me here 😀
You have a cute dog. 🙂
She always hears what I say, but doesn’t always listen!
Wow, that’s so interesting.
I know, I was fascinated to learn that children’s reading skills could be improved so much in this manner too!
what a lovely idea, I had not heard of this program, I shared it with my FB friends, Thank you Letizia.
Thanks for passing it on – I think it’s such a sweet idea too!
There is an actual program for that, how cute! In the photo Baffi looks a little grumpy, perhaps because you interrupted her reading! 😀 If I start reading to my furry companion, she would run off due to short attention span. After all, she’s still a baby.. 🙂 But I still am tempted to try!
Maybe start with picture books first 🙂
Baffi was so patient posing for that photo; she’s such a sweetie!
Haha! She’s adorable! 🙂
Haha, that’s brilliant! I love your dog with the book in the end picture, he’s so cute!
I never thought of children reading out loud to dogs before, what a great idea, some furry encouragement seems to go a long way! 🙂
I would never have thought of it either, but I think it’s such a great idea too!
Thanks for the sweet words about my dog – she’s so lovely and fun 🙂
That is such a great idea! I can totally believe that dogs would help kids learn to read like that.
Sadly, I’ve never read to Sonic. We watch TV together a lot though, and sometimes he watches me play videogames too. I fear I’m not doing enough to help him learn…
Baffi is so cute!
If you comment on what you’re watching or playing, then it’s probably quite similar to reading to him. Sonic probably just loves hearing your voice. And he must be great at video games 🙂
Only the ones where you don’t need an opposing thumb, like DJ Hero!
That’s so cute; that way he just has to push the button with his little paw!
What a gorgeous post, could feel myself just melting looking at those darling dogs listening so intently… When my daughter had doll’s tea-parties, her cavalier King Charles always sat neatly in the circle with the dollies listening to the polite conversation.
And one of our dogs used to walk round to the back of the TV to see where the sheep and sheep dogs had gone…..
I love the image of her Cavalier King Charles sitting in a circle of dolls having “tea”; so charming!
What a brilliant idea. I was a shy child and this might have helped me out of my shell. I should start reading to my dog. I wonder if he likes mysteries.
Hahaha! You’ll have to let me know if he does!
I’ve always wanted a dog. Those pictures are great, This has proper put a smile on my face.
I love the photos too – the kids and dogs are too cute!
So lovely 🙂 What a fantastic idea!
Anything that gives kids a boost and helps them read– and get away from the TV– is great! Dogs really do listen and love.
I know, what I love about this is that the children improve in a loving, warm environment and the dogs feel special at the same time. So wonderful!
This is something I have no idea about. But getting to know new things is… well… what perhaps life is, right ?
Having pets is kind of like privilege around here. Only the rich and affluent seem to be into that. But I guess we should change all that. Reading to pets is an interesting idea. I googled for READ and this is like a whole different dimension that developing countries could put in their educational setup.
Thank you so much for the post 🙂
How interesting; I always love getting your perspective on subjects, Tatsat!
I recently saw this program offered at our OKC public library and thought it was a fantastic idea. Glad you blogged about it!
That’s great; hopefully you’ll see children reading to dogs on one of your visits!
I thought so too!
Love it! Beautiful photos too. Have a wonderful day. Thank you so much for the likes on my posts. 🙂 Renee
I love the positive, fun nature of your blog 🙂
Thank-you so much. 🙂
Love love love the idea! Baffi looks smart too in that photo 🙂 I’m afraid she would need reading glasses soon 🙂
Yes, I think so; she will be 13 years old in November! I should buy her a pair of reading glasses for her birthday 🙂
Don’t forget to share her picture on her special day. I’d like to wish her a happy birthday 🙂
That’s impressive! And when your dog starts writing novels and poetry, that will be even more impressive! 🙂 Good post!
haha! I think there are some novels out there “written” by dogs!
Love the post, Letizia. My dog (a Labrador) devoured books when she was young…literally, I’m afraid. Maybe I should have read more to her out loud.
I’d expect no less from a writer’s dog!
Mine nibbled at books when she was young. I have a photo in an early blog post:
As a friend of mine once said, they seem hungry for knowledge!
Haha, I remember that book-nibbling post. Baffi is so sweet 🙂 And this is a wonderful idea… it makes so much sense!
I know, I had never thought of the idea before, but now that I know about it, I agree, it makes so much sense!
Thanks for the lovely words about Baffi 🙂
We owe a great deal of gratitude to our four legged friends. They are true kindred spirits. They even take the time to learn our language knowing that humans simply do not have the capacity to learn theirs.
They are wonderful, I agree! My dog teaches me to read her body language every day but she’s much faster at learning mine than I am at learning hers (but that’s what makes the relationship so fascinating, I believe). You are so right!
Wonderful post and great Blog!!! My daughter studies in her bed with our dog!!!
That’s wonderful that your daughter studies with your dog – such a lovely image 🙂
I love this idea! Dogs need the stimulation that human interaction brings, and I have been looking for great ways to “play” with my dog without having to run, run, run all the time. Thanks for a wonderful post.
I’m so glad you liked it, Liesa! I agree, it’s a great way to interact with your dog without having to run around all the time. Let me know how it works out!
Very much enjoyed your post and shared it with my friends on Facebook too. Frankly, had never considered it before, but will definitely try it out with my little poodle.
I agree, it’s a wonderful program and idea! I hope you and your poodle will enjoy it.
I love the photo of you riding your bicycle with your poodle in the basket – I ride the same way with my dog, Baffi!
Thanks for dropping by 🙂
I see you are a WordPress blogger. Do you not allow reblogging? I would love to reblog it. I write about dogs, bikes and all beautiful things. This is one.
Yes, I allow reblogging, there should be a button you can click on the top of the screen, towards the left. Someone re-blogged one of my posts a few weeks ago so it should be working.
Thanks for the potential re-blog!
Thanks for your note. For some reason I couldn’t find that button. I have done it now.
Hi Letizia, excellent article, as always. Dogs truly are man (and woman’s) best friend, in so many wonderful and loving ways! Thank you, Penny
I know, it’s so wonderful how the dogs can help the children and the children can keep the dogs busy at the same time. Quite beautiful. Thanks for the visit!
Absolutely. Yes I agree with you, children and dogs are so very good for one another! Happy to visit you my friend, Penny 🙂
I’ve heard about this program a few times. I keep thinking that if I had to pick a book to read to a group of dogs, I’d read “No More Dead Dogs,” which is about a teenager who refuses to read any more books about dogs that die at the end of the story. I think the dogs would love it, and would heartily agree. They’d lick me for sure.
What a great book title! I will definitely check it out as I love reading dog stories but they do all seem to end tragically, and I find myself sobbing uncontrollably.
I will read it to Baffi and see if she likes it too 🙂
Thanks for the suggestion!
It’s good of you to spread the word about reading dogs! More people need to know! It’s my favorite job!
It’s such a fantastic thing to do (for the kids and for the dogs!). It’s wonderful that you are part of this 🙂
The last photo – awesome!
Thanks! She’s such a darling 🙂