Have You Read to Your Dog Lately?

by On August 26, 2013 in General, Holidays

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<a href="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-listens-sized.jpg"><img class="size-medium wp-image-3813 alignright" alt="benji listens sized" src="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-listens-sized2.jpg" width="275" height="308" /></a>

Did you know that Monday, August 26, 2013 is <a href="http://www.daysoftheyear.com/days/dog-day/">National Dog Day</a>??Along with their many other wonderful traits — loyalty, affection, occasional paper fetching and good humor — dogs make pretty cool companions when it comes to reading, too.

Haven’t tried it yet? ?You should. We’re not just talking the beloved family dog curled at your feet while you read silently. We’re talking you, reading out loud to your dog. Yup.<!–more–>

In a past blog, we wrote about the <a href="http://bookboard.com/blog/2013/05/a-kid-a-book-and-a-four-legged-friend/">Reading Education Assistance Dogs program</a> (from Intermountain Therapy Animals) where dogs are brought to schools, libraries and community centers to help reluctant young readers feel more confident and inspired to read. ?Yet?as most kids who have read to dogs figure out, Fido can get a lot out of hearing a good book, too.

This weekend my daughter Hope read to our neighbor buddy Benji, who likes to sniff Bookboard on iPads. ?Once Hope found the right story, Benji appeared to have a great time. If only we knew for sure what he was thinking…

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<a href="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-yawns-sized.jpg"><img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-3810" alt="benji yawns sized" src="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-yawns-sized-150×150.jpg" width="150" height="150" /></a>

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"Great story, but now I need a nap. "

<a href="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-leaves-sized.jpg"><img class="alignright size-thumbnail wp-image-3811" alt="benji leaves sized" src="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-leaves-sized-150×150.jpg" width="150" height="150" /></a>

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<p style="text-align: right;">"Pause for a sec, I’ve got to take care of some business first…"</p>
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<a href="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-reflects-sized.jpg"><img class="alignleft size-thumbnail wp-image-3812" alt="benji reflects sized" src="http://bookboard.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/benji-reflects-sized-150×150.jpg" width="150" height="150" /></a>

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"Ah, now this story I love! The school girls are fighting, but eventually become friends. It reminds me of this feisty cocker spaniel I befriended at the park…"

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OK, it’s just conjecture, but what was clear was that Hope enjoyed reading to Benji and Benji enjoyed listening, hanging out side-by-side. Dogs are kind of awesome that way.

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Diana is a sociologist, freelance writer and mom, though rarely in that order. Her writing spans topics from parenting joys and challenges to prevention education. She writes a monthly parenting blog for Yahoo and has published feature articles on adoption, family rituals and the childcare industry for parenting publications. Diana earned her Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California at Santa Cruz. These days find her hanging with her husband and book-loving six year old in the San Francisco Bay Area, while happily blogging and serving as a reading advocate for Bookboard.

2 Comments

  1. Jenny Cole

    August 30, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    I raise puppies for service dog organizations. A way I have discovered reading helps is when I get a new puppy and am crate-training him the first week or two. Often they are not happy about being in their crates and miss their old home. If I know they’ve been walked and have no immediate needs, I settle them down in their crate by reading to them. After a few minutes the shrill crying dies down and they seem to be listening to the sound of my voice, calm and steady. Within minutes they are usually asleep. A few times of this and they don’t mind their crate. Sponge-Pup, a post I wrote in May of this year on my blog, talks about this.

    • Diana

      August 30, 2013 at 4:17 pm

      Hi Jenny — I loved hearing your description of reading to puppies during the crate-training period. I smiled imagining different breeds having different story preferences!