CHATHAM – The Eldredge Public Library is going to the dogs.
This weekend through the middle of November are “Dog Days at the EPL.” The library will sponsor a number of canine-related programs, ranging authors of dog-themes books and stories to an appearance by the Yarmouth Police K-9 unit.
“Everybody likes dogs,” said Library Director Irene Gillies. There are all sorts of benefits to having a canine companion, she pointed out, from improved mood and health to reduced stress and improved home security.
The decision to make dogs the theme for fall programs came after both she and Assistant Director Amy Andreasson both got new puppies. Gillies' corgi/terrier mix, Macky, is a rescue dog, while Andreasson's six-month-old puppy Bella is a yellow lab. Gillies said she wants to encourage dog ownership “so everyone can be as happy as we are.”
And the Cape seems a natural focus. “Cape Cod is a big dog place,” Gillies noted. That's something highlighted in “Dogs on Cape Cod,” a photo book by Chatham photographer Kim Roderiques. The lavish coffee table book features hundreds of photos of Cape Codders and their dogs. One of the centerpieces of Dog Days is a talk by Roderiques, herself the owner of two dogs, on Oct. 18 at 7 p.m. at the library.
Two other literary highlights include a Nov. 10 talk by David Rosenfelt, author of “Dogtripping: 25 Rescues, 11 Volunteers and 3 RVs on Our Candidate Cross-country Adventure” and “Lessons From Tara: Life Advice From the World's Most Brilliant Dog.” He's also the author of 17 Andy Carpenter dog-based mystery books as well as several other stand-alone novels.
Gillies said Rosenfelt was a Hollywood marketing executive who started the Tara Foundation and rescued more than 4,000 mature (nine years or older) dogs. “Dogtripping” tells the story of moving 25 rescued dogs across country to his new home in Maine in three “woofabagoes” with the help of 11 volunteers. Most of the dogs he takes in, he ends up keeping, Gillies said. On his website, www.davidrosenfelt.com, he refers to himself as a “novelist with 27 dogs.”
His talk begins at 3:30 p.m. at the library.
Also on Nov. 10 at 3:30 p.m., author Spencer Quinn will talk about his adult mystery series, the Chet and Bernie books, as well as his new series for children about Birdie and Bowser. In both dogs are the more than capable companions of crime-solving humans.
Quinn is actually Falmouth author Peter Abrahams, an Edgar Award-winning author who has two dogs of his own. Whether they assist in the writing of any or all of his books is a good question to ask when he appears at the library.
On Saturday, Oct. 29, the Yarmouth Police K-9 unit will send two members and their canine partners to the library for a talk and demonstration of the dogs' skills. They'll talk about how the dogs are bred and trained and the duties they perform to help Cape law enforcement officials.
Members of the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Cape Cod Animal Care and Adoption Center will be at the library on Nov. 12 at 10:30 a.m. with at least two dogs. They'll explain their mission and talk about training, care and guest dog visiting.
The library is also sponsoring a Dog Days photo contest with prizes “to be announced,” Gillies said.
There will be a number of children's events and programs centered around dogs as well. There will be reading challenges, scavenger hunts, displays and contests in the youth services area. On Oct. 22 between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m., there will be a Family Storywalk, which combines reading a children's book aloud with walking outdoors. Families, including leashed canines, are invited to meet in front of the library or activities and a literary stroll. No registration is required.
Quinn's latest Bowser mystery will be the subject of the “Chat and Chewie” discussion for students in grades three to six, while My FIRST Book Group will discuss three dog-related picture books. Both happen Oct. 27, at 1:30 p.m. and 5 p.m. Register beforehand at the youth services desk.
More programs are being added throughout the month, said Gillies. Check the library's website, www.eldredgelibrary.org, for details and updates.
“Dogs make everything better!” Gillies said.