Gone to the Dogs
by Librarian Annie Sprague
“A dog doesn’t care if you’re rich or poor, clever or dull, smart or dumb. Give him your heart and he’ll give you his.” From the book Marley and Me by John Grogan
Last week I had the great pleasure to visit Eagle Creek Elementary school with my new friends: one two legged and one four legged! Cruse, a beautiful silver Standard Poodle, and his Human, Brenda Thrasher, came to meet the children in Ms. Maxwell, Ms. Baker, and Ms. Bennett’s classes. Cruse is a sensitive, sweet and intelligent dog (poodles rank #2 in all dog breeds for intelligence) and he is also a licensed, insured and trained therapy dog who adores children. We came to school to tell the students about the Estacada Library’s Read to the Dogs program, where kids sign up to read to Cruse in 15-minute sessions.
It was so much fun to watch Cruse interact with the children. He is a wonderfully mellow dog. He let each child say “hi” and pet him, and he loved the attention and affection he got from the kids. It was fun for me to answer questions about reading to Cruse. Parents, one of the benefits of reading to dogs is that they are calm, non-judgemental listeners that can build a child’s confidence with reading. With confidence comes enthusiasm for reading and improved reading skills. Kids love dogs and these kids were so excited about the idea of spending 15 minutes with Cruse and having his undivided attention!
To sign up your child to read to Cruse call 503.630.8273. Cruse and Brenda are at the library on the first Sunday of the month from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. on the following dates: April 7, May 4, June 1.