The animals at the Humane Society of Missouri don't have homes for the holidays, but local children are doing their part to spread much-needed cheer.
The shelter celebrated its second annual Deck the Howls event by inviting children from their Shelter Buddies Reading Program to shower the dogs and cats with love, attention, and holiday cheer.
The program is comprised of volunteer children that choose to spend their free time reading stories to the animals. The dogs benefit from the needed socialization, and the children have a judge-free zone where they can practice their reading skills. By the end of a session, the shy dogs are more comfortable around people, and the children are more confident in their reading.
For the Deck the Howls event, children adorned their favorite holiday PJs and sat down to read bedtime stories to the shelter's adoptable dogs. Candlelight set the mood, and the young readers lulled their furry audience to sleep.
A pup named Kimber listened intently as 11-year-old Tailor C. read "Little Bear's Special Friend" out loud. Tailor told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch;
"I think they were listening. They came right up to the glass."
According to five-year-old Lainey H.;
"They like seeing the pictures the best."
And because the holidays wouldn't be the same without a few sweet treats, the children also decorated pet-safe cookies. They spent time playing with kittens, and made toys and blankets to help the animals get in the holiday spirit.
All Images via Humane Society of Missouri/Facebook
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