The Mountaineer Therapy Dogs will return to the Philippi Public Library from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. March 8.
According to Director Judy Buckner Larry, "The dogs and their owners are returning after a two-month absence, and we are thrilled to have them back. Children are welcome to spend some time reading to the dogs."
"This unique literacy program pairs the children with the specially-trained therapy dogs to act as non-judgmental listeners for young readers. Reading to the therapy dogs help calm the children and relieves the pressure of embarrassment if they make a mistake," said Larry.
"The children are excited to see the dogs in the library and to read to them. If the children are too young to read, they can still participate by showing the dogs the pictures or telling them a story. The dogs love a good story."
The Mountaineer Therapy Dogs that visit the library include Emmett, the Bernese Mountain dog owned by Nicole Klee, toy poodle Brenda Lee, owned by Barbara Higgins, and miniature Italian greyhounds, Strawberry and Molly, both owned by Becky Conrad. Philippi Public Library is fortunate to be one of six West Virginia libraries that the dogs and their owners visit for reading to dog programs.
According to Higgins, "A therapy dog reading program provides a positive and fun educational experience for children and parents. Reading to a therapy dog can improve a child's reading skills, boost their self-confidence and build their social skills. As an added benefit, children can learn how to interact with a dog."
Mountaineer Therapy Dogs are registered and insured therapy dogs.
Now that the weather is getting better, the library will continue to host "Dog Tales" on the second Saturday of each month from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. Space is limited, and registration and parental permission are required. For more information about this program or other children's literacy programs, call the library at 304-457-3495 or stop by the circulation desk.