Skip to main content

BARK Therapy Dogs

Beach Animals Reading with Kids


Calendar and Past Events
Testing Requirements
How You Can Help/Donate
Our Generous Supporters
Praise for BARK
BARK for Troops
In The Media
Our Favorite Books
BARK Teams Volunteer
Volunteer Spotlight
Tired Pups
Retired Dogs
Over the Bridge Dogs
Community Links
Contact Us

Founded in 2007, BARK is an all-volunteer program that encourages children to increase their reading skills and self-confidence by reading aloud to certified therapy dogs.  Students find it intimidating to read in front of classmates, but love to read to the non-judgmental, calming dogs. BARK now has 170 teams listening to kids in more than 100 schools and libraries in California.

BARK teams also visit nursing homes, senior living facilities, veterans centers, and even de-stress college students during finals week.

Does Reading to the Dogs Really Help?

A study at UC Davis (Feb 2010) showed that kids in reading dog programs increase their reading skills by 12% to 20% over kids not in a reading dog program. Because our volunteers are certified as therapy dog teams, they can also visit hospitals, nursing homes and other locations.

Educators we have worked with report 82% of BARK students increased their reading skills, self-confidence, and/or class participation.


(Tobey at Elementary School in Wilmington)


Students read to dogs 15-20 minutes once per week for eight weeks.  They are given a bookmark with photos and information about the dog they are reading with.

If you have a well-behaved dog and one hour per week OR if you have time on weekends/evenings, come join us!  (click on testing requirements to see how to join.) All supplies are provided by BARK.

(Gracie at San Juan Capistrano Library)

BARK dogs also attend open houses, back-to-school nights, Dr. Seuss week, book festivals, and other special events.

(Herbie at Artesia Library)


Go to CALENDAR to see where you can read to the BARK dogs.

Our Read-A-Thon day was a success!! and Reading to the dogs was a HIT!!!

I wish I had a camera filming the moment when the dogs arrived - all the little kids were having lunch outside and they went crazy after seeing the dogs coming to our school!!! It was like celebrities arriving to the Red Carpet!!!
It was a beautiful and educational experience for all of us!!! We just loved having the dogs and their moms with us!!! What a gift for our school community!!! What a treat!!! You all gave us a precious memory. 

Thank you!!! Thank you so much!!! Please let everybody know how grateful we are for giving us the opportunity to enjoy this great experience.
God bless you all!!!
Daniela Campbell
St Barnabus School, Long Beach


Read the Press Telegram article about BARK dogs helping child literacy skills in Long Beach.


(Pebbles, Doheny and Pixie at CSULB)

"We are so grateful for our 'Rockstar Reading Dogs' today. We are up to 34 kids who love to sit and practice their reading. Some of the students asked if they could bring books to read during the week and we have given them permission. We are so grateful to see those who are challenged overcome the obstacles. We are blessed by having this program."
Carolyn Hoover, Summer Day Care at Travis Ranch Elementary, Yorba Linda

How many kids does it take to pet a

BARK dog?  LOTS!!

(Groucho with lots of kids!)

We're on FACEBOOK! Click here

(You do not need to be part of Facebook to view our page)

 We're on TWITTER! Click here

Check out BARK on YouTube!

Thanks to Veronica Ferrantelli for

making this video for BARK!

 BARK dogs are now "listening" to kids using sign language at Cleveland Elementary.

Watch Video


(Stella at Stanton Library)

To help BARK please contact us at
or call (562)235-8835

BARK   P.O. Box 91478, Long Beach, CA  90809


To Donate visit our How You Can Help page

Website Design by
OdysseyOne Web Designs
lululemon black friday Abercrombie and fitch black friday juicy couture black friday juicy couture black friday kate spade cyber monday coach cyber monday victoria secret black friday gucci cyber monday victoria's secret black friday burberry cyber monday michael kors cyber monday coach black Friday canada goose black friday north face black friday canada goose black friday Babyliss cyber monday coach black Friday kate spade cyber monday beats by dre cyber Monday north face cyber Monday uggs cyber monday michael kors cyber monday michael kors cyber monday lululemon cyber monday jordan black friday uggs black friday nike black friday uggs cyber monday hollister cyber monday michael kors cyber monday uggs cyber monday prada black friday coach cyber monday lululemon cyber monday north face black friday sale pandora black Friday beats by dre black Friday abercrombie and fitch cyber Monday chanel cyber monday moncler black friday gucci black friday coach black friday uggs black friday beats by dre black Friday sale beats by dre black Friday kate spade cyber monday uggs cyber monday uggs cyber monday north face black friday moncler cyber monday uggs black friday Designer handbags cyber monday Juicy Couture black friday michael kors cyber Monday north face black friday Juicy Couture black friday uggs black friday coach black friday beats by dre black Friday beats by dre black Friday