“Come on over and READ to ROVER!” That’s the invitation we’ve extended to Jefferson County children since 2004. Olympic Mountain Pet Pals originally teamed with the Port Townsend Public Library during the summer to enhance children’s love of reading through the use of therapy dogs.

Now during the school year, the READ to ROVER teams work with second graders at Grant Street Elementary School in Port Townsend and Chimacum Creek Primary School in Port Hadlock.

Abby and Steinbeck listen to a summer reader in the Port Townsend Library

Sparky and Laura listen to a READer at Chimacum Creek Primary School


Research shows that children who are learning to read feel more relaxed and less self-conscious when reading to animals. The program aims to improve reading skills, nurture a lifelong love of reading, and help children build bonds with animals.

Currently twenty-five volunteer teams in Jefferson County have completed their training and are now officially registered therapy dogs.

Linda and Karma listen to a student at Grant Street Elementary School

For those in Jefferson County, WA wanting more information about the READ to ROVER program, contact Kate Schumann at 360-385-4896 or Carla Ellis at 360-385-3950.

Ava and Lucy read with a Quilcene student

If you are interested in helping to start the READ to ROVER program in the Quilcene or Brinnon schools by becoming a volunteer team there, please contact Lisa Aniballi at (360) 821-9297.