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TheDay.com - A job I was born to do | Southeastern Connecticut News, Sports, Weather and Video | The Day newspaper

A job I was born to do

Rufus Giuseppe

Publication: theday.com

Published 07/11/2012 12:00 AM
Updated 07/11/2012 03:51 PM

I love my job.

True, I work only one morning a week. Also true, I’ve worked just one day. But I can’t wait to go back.

Let me tell you why.

As you might recall, I became a certified therapy dog earlier this year. I bet some folks thought I’d get the certification, strut around with the neckerchief and leash tag and never work a day in my life. You know, like kids from rich families who go to law school then never get a real job.

But not me, I was just sniffing around for the right entry-level position. Then the Westerly Public Library sniffed me out.

The children’s room was starting a summer reading program, Pawsitive Tales, during which kids keep their skills fresh over the summer by reading aloud to a dog.

I’m a superb listener, I don’t yawn or interrupt, and I have lots of experience being read to by my little girl person. This clearly was the job for me.

I have two assignments each week, one with a little boy and another with a little girl. They both love dogs and are about as sweet as two kids can be. And I know a lot of kids, so trust me.

This past week they read to me about baby animals and a fantastical visit to Antarctica. Good stuff. And if either one hesitated over a word, my lady person was right there to help out.

Me, I was stretched out comfortably on the floor at their feet in our quiet corner just listening.

I also did my usual skills demonstration (I think calling them “tricks” is insulting.) for each kid and got some good pats and rubs.

In between appointments I made friends with the other parents and little ones visiting the children’s room.

One toddler introduced herself and told me her dog who had gone to heaven. I gave her my best sad-eyed look. She wondered what I was doing at the library so my lady person told her I was taking part in the summer reading program with some of the other kids.

With that she went to a nearby bookshelf, selected a title and placed it on the carpet in front of me and opened to the first page. Then she pointed at me and said, “read it.”

My person had to explain that I’m the listener, not the reader.

Like I said, it's a great gig.

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