Finn the cat was given to a shelter in hopes that he could find a “furever” home. Two days later, the Rescue Readers came in to read to the animals. Research has shown that reading to animals is calming. The Humane Society of Golden Valley, Minnesota, created the Rescue Readers Program to help the animals be less fearful and to encourage a love for reading in the kids who participate.
On this day, something special was about to occur. A young boy was one of the Rescue Readers that day, and miracles of miracles, he, too, was named Finn!
Finn (the boy) and Finn (the cat) hit it off right away. The cat is extremely affectionate, so reading to him was challenging for the boy.
However, Finn (the boy) wasn’t to be deterred from his task, and he read aloud for the better part of an hour.
Whether Finn (the cat) was interested in dinosaurs or not, there was no doubt he was intensely interested in the hugs and pets that Finn (the boy) was giving him. Once they were through with the book, a hug-fest was in effect for the rest of the hour.
The best part is that Finn (the cat) went home with a new family just two days later! But that’s not the end of the story. And neither was Finn the only child reading to the animals that day.
“Research shows reading can have a calming effect on animals,” the Humane Society said. “As a bonus, students gain confidence and improve their reading skills!”
The kids are very special children. They know that reading to the animals at the shelter is beneficial to them and might be the very thing that gets them adopted.
The kids are required to take an orientation class where they learn about the Humane Society and the Rescue Readers Program. Afterwards, they can sign up for one-hour reading sessions at the shelter.
Kids have the option of spending the whole hour with one animal or divide their time so they can visit with several animals.
The Humane Society provides books to read and blankets to sit on, but the kids can bring their own special books from home if they want to. All the readers receive a special Rescue Readers bookmark, reading log, and a certificate.
Do you know an animal-loving kid? If a Rescue Readers Program is not available in your neighborhood, perhaps you can start your own. The time that the children spend with a shelter dog or cat could make the difference between being adopted or not. Please share this video with your friends on Facebook. Will you be the one to start a program where you live? I hope so!