Wednesday, September 11, 2013

K-9 Bo Visits for a Special Story Time

"Can I pet your dog?"

It wasn't the first question the kids asked when Mentor Police Officer Bill Mackey and his K-9 Bo visited for a special story time Tuesday at Mentor Public Library. But it was the question everyone wanted to ask.

With all due respect Officer Mackey and our own Kim Sidorick (who read the kids "Officer Buckle and Gloria,") Bo was the headliner Tuesday night.
Luka Rajic dressed as a police officer for the story time with Bo and Officer Mackey.)
And the answer was, yes. Of course they could pet Bo. A few lucky kids even got to play a quick impromptu game of fetch with him.

Bo's a hard-working police dogs. He can sniff out drugs and fugitives; but he's also a four-legged, fuzzy ambassador for the police department.

Whenever Mackey and Bo are out and about, kids (and grownups) ask if they can pet Bo; and Mackey never minds. (As long as they ask first. Bo's a nice dog, but you still don't want to surprise a K-9.)
Lily Mahony pets Bo during story time.
Generalizations are dangerous things. If we say "every kid loves dogs," you'll find the child who doesn't. But can we agree that a lot of kids love dogs?

Police dogs. Firetruck dogs. Big dogs. Little dogs. Dogs of moderate size.

Pretty much any dog of even temperament is going to be a hit with a quorum of kids.

That's why we host Paws to Read, which helps shy readers get more comfortable by pairing them with therapy dogs.

It's so wonderful to watch the kids become more confident readers during a Paws to Read session. The dogs put them at ease and allow them to accomplish what they've been able to do all along.
By the same token, a police officer - or any new adult, for that matter - can be intimidating to a kid. But everyone is a lot more approachable when they have a dog with them.

And Bo made a wonderful icebreaker Tuesday night!

So thanks to Mackey, Bo and the Mentor Police Department. While we don't want to speak for everyone, we're pretty sure the kids had a great time.

They got to pet Bo, after all.

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