Stories with Stewy: Therapy dog stars in children's books - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Stories with Stewy: Therapy dog stars in children's books

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COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho -

As students file in and take their seats, Kristen Cooper-Herby begins the reading adventure.

The Coeur d’Alene author has been writing children’s books about her dog, Stewy, and her family for a few years.

“I thought 'what would be a good way to get it out to kids?' And I thought going to the schools,” Cooper said.

Cooper makes her rounds at Coeur d’Alene elementary schools reading her stories, which is apart of a reading program she started.

She primarily reads to second grade classes, a grade where one of her daughters struggled.

"I thought this might be a good thing for kids who are struggling with reading and I started a non-profit called "Stories With Stewy,” she said.

She reads one chapter of one her books and then challenges the students to read more.

Then, the star enters the building.

Stewy is an Australian/Corgi mix who is trained as a therapy dog.

“She (Stewy) loves the kids as much as they love her,” she said.

Not only does Stewy go to schools, she visits hospitals here and in Phoenix, Seattle, and several other cities.

For Cooper, it used to be about writing.

But now seeing the smile on the kid’s faces and their excitement to read means everything to her.

“They can achieve anything they put their minds to,” Cooper said, “they just need someone that's there to help them and believe in them and show them some kindness and compassion, something we all need in this world right now so that's where we come in."

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