Pets Best hosts 2nd annual contest to recognize therapy dogs in classrooms and libraries
BOISE, Idaho – Pets Best Insurance Services, LLC, a leading United States pet-health insurance agency, announced today a Naperville, Illinois therapy dog has been selected as the winner of the agency’s second annual Books & Barks contest. Ellie Rose, a therapy dog who regularly visits the students of Peterson Elementary, won the nationwide contest, which was created to recognize and bring awareness to the inspirational work of therapy dogs in classrooms and libraries across the nation.
In its second year, the Books & Barks contest brought in a total of 12,206 votes. Various communities voted in support of eight finalists from across the U.S., individuals casting their votes by visiting the company’s Facebook page. As part of the contest, Pets Best awarded $1,000 to Peterson Elementary and $500 to a pet therapy organization selected by Ellie Rose’s owner and handler. Ellie Rose celebrated her win with the students of Peterson Elementary, as they lined the hallways on both floors to applaud and pet her as she took a parade lap.
Renee Cole, Ellie Rose’s owner and handler, said the 5-year-old Bernese Mountain Dog has been visiting Peterson Elementary for two years. When she was 9 months old, Ellie Rose received her first Canine Good Citizen Award, and went on to gain her therapy dog certification at the age of 1 year. Ellie Rose received a total of 5,229 online votes during the Books & Barks contest. Fellow finalist Buttons, from Hazle Township, Pennsylvania, was a close runner up with 5,101 votes.
“I’m so proud of Ellie for being the gentle soul she is, one who does not care if a child reads in a whisper, a big voice, or one that can only express themselves with emotion,” Cole said. “Peterson Elementary is a trailblazer in our district in regularly welcoming a therapy dog into the classrooms.”