Therapy dog visits library on SaturdaysWhile 7-year-old Olivia Reed read the books she checked out of the Park Grove Branch Library, “Mars” was an encouraging and non-critical companion.
By: Judy Spooner, South Washington County Bulletin
While 7-year-old Olivia Reed read the books she checked out of the Park Grove Branch Library, “Mars” was an encouraging and non-critical companion.
Mars is one of the dogs Cottage Grove and other area residents will notice when they come to the library on Saturday mornings.
A “Dog Gone Reading” sign directs children and their parents to the alcove by the entrance for reading sessions. There is also a cart filled with children’s books.
Parents sign up ahead of time for 15-minute sessions for their children to sit next to a dog on a quilt.
Bobbie Miles, Mars’ owner, started the program at the library that will continue every week.
Mars is a certified therapy dog that Miles, a nurse at Woodwinds Hospital in Woodbury, takes to hospitals and residences for elderly people.
Part of her interest in starting the library program with dogs is to encourage children to read.
“It’s also my need to do things for other people,” she said on Saturday, April 5, at the library.
It appears that Mars also likes to do things for people, because he greets children and adults with his right paw raised as if he’s getting to know them by shaking hands.
As Reed pulled each book from the bag, Mars sniffed it and rested his paw in her lap while she read.
Reed read all the books she checked out and got several dog kisses from her canine companion.
At the end of her session, Reed petted her new friend. “He wants more kids,” she said.