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Bella's Good Deeds Bella came to B.O.N.E.S. needing a new home. She had been greatly loved, but needed special attention to learn house training and overcome some fears. Loving, very smart, and having lots of energy, she made good progress while being fostered.

She was adopted by Vic and Nancy, who volunteer at hospitals, elderly centers, and schools. Bella showed her smarts by passing a series of training classes. She achieved Pet Therapy certification in 2016. Vic and Nancy will share stories about their experiences with Bella on this page.

You can also follow Bella on Facebook.

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May, 2018: Reading Week

Bella's Good Deeds - May, 2018: Reading Week Do you think of your dog as a person because of all the remarkable things she does or do you think of your dog just as a dog?

This was a question posed to us from Mariyah L. after Bella's visit to the fourth grades during National Reading Week at Springbrook School in Westerly, Rhode Island. I am sure your response would be very similar to most B.O.N.E.S. Beagles owners.

This inquiry, as well as numerous others from the fourth-grade students of teachers DeJesus, Siler, and Wagner, made it a rewarding and enjoyable visit to the elementary school. The Reading Week program was organized by a committee led by Reading Teacher Anita Guarnieri and Librarian Lisa Kenyon. Team Bella was invited to present a short reading related program and our focus was on Bella's story, breeds of Dogs, and dog-related stories (as pictured in the photo). The featured shared book was Stephanie Calmenson's May I Pet Your Dog?

We shared Bella's story leading to her adoption from B.O.N.E.S., her Good Citizen and Therapy Dog trainings and certifications, and the hospital, nursing home, and school visits. We briefly looked at a chart showing the 200-plus AKC American dog breeds and the students shared information about their dogs. They knew about small dogs like Chihuahuas and large dogs like mastiffs and Great Danes. Dogs and cats were parts of many students' families. Beagles were a favorite.

The students were impressed that Bella had to go to school, do her homework to earn her certificates, devoted time to visiting hospitals and schools, and was so calm and gentle being in front of the class. Samuel remarked in a thank you letter, "I think it is great that go out to hospitals and schools to visit and that I am very lucky to meet your amazing dog."

Bella consistently made an impression on the Springbrook fourth graders. They described her with words like "calm," "gentle," "adorable," "skillful," "well-trained," "amazing," and "cute." They also judged her story to be pretty cool! Apparently, the students talked favorably about her for a while, want her to return, and recommended that next year's fourth graders have an opportunity to meet her. Summer remarked in her letter, "I was not here when Bella came. And if I was here, I would have been excited."

Several students noted how special it was that Team Bella devoted their time and visited hospitals. Ava, a student, said, "I know if I were sick I would love to see Bella." Hearing this, we realized that what we do is special and that volunteering in a community is being seen by our children as positive.

During our work in hospitals and schools, Bella, as a goodwill ambassador and therapy dog, has accomplished great things. Much remains to do in the future. We are presently exploring volunteering in Rhode Island's Hope Hospice and Palliative Care in addition to our weekly efforts at the Miriam and Kent Hospitals.

Bella's Good Deeds - May, 2018: Reading WeekJust so you know: everyone recognizes who's the main member of Team Bella! It's the formerly shy and timid B.O.N.E.S. rescue beagle now referred to as skillful, amazing, and well-trained. For the human element of the team there's hope for the former principal with 47 years' experience. As Nicole C. expressed, "I think one day you will be a great teacher!"

Until the next Bella's Good Deeds, keep doing what you do, B.O.N.E.S. volunteers and supporters!