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Reading tales to wagging tails

Children have the opportunity to read aloud to dogs at the Park City Library

Make no bones about it, Dog Days have returned to the Park City Library.

For the fifth year in a row Reading Education Assistant Dogs will lend their ears to children who want to practice reading aloud.

"It’s creating a love of reading or just an experience so that kids, or those who are reluctant to read out loud, have a positive experience," youth services librarian Heather Reynolds said.

The benefits, Reynolds said, are giving a child the chance to read to a non-judgmental audience while interacting with animals. She said some of the children who participate in the program are fearful of dogs, or simply aren’t allowed to have pets at home and like having an opportunity to spend time with man’s best friend.

She added that Dog Days also help children to practice reading over the summer so they maintain their skills and don’t fall behind in the three months they are out of school.

There are also potential health benefits to the program.

"If you look at all the research on pets and petting animals as a stress reliever, it’s a good time for the kids to come in and relax," Reynolds said.

Children may sign up for a 20 minute reading block at the front desk or by calling the Park City Library at: 615-5600. Sessions are available on the following Saturday’s: July 8, 15, 29 and Aug. 12, 19 and 26 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

They may bring a book of their choice or pick from books Reynolds has set aside on dogs and pets.

The Summit County Library is also participating in the program and will have their final session on Thursday, July 13 from 11 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. To sign up, an appointment can be made at the front desk or by calling 615-3900.


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