ST. LOUIS — The Humane Society of Missouri in St. Louis hosted their first ever “Deck The Howls”event this month that saw elementary school students reading to shelter dogs for the holidays.
Members of Club Hope (Helping Our Pets and Environment), an after-school program created by the Humane Society of Missouri, welcomed the students to their shelter on December 12 so they could spend the afternoon reading to the dogs. The aim of the event was to help socialize the dogs to prepare them for adoption.
Not only did the children get to spend time with the dogs, they also got to sip on hot cocoa, eat cookies and make greeting cards for the kennels of adoptable dogs.
“Our shy dogs learn to relax around new people and our high energy dogs learn that calm behavior is desirable,” Kathy Warnick, president of the Humane Society of Missouri, tells People. “In addition, the program allows the kids to improve their reading skills by offering an easy and attentive, not to mention adorable, listening audience.”
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Club HOPE meets for 90 minutes once a month, at participating schools, where they explore and discuss animal-related topics. The aim is to become compassionate, caring and responsible people.