For four years Petal, a “pedigree mongrel” as her human Anne Davies refers to her, has been a regular fixture at the Alexandra Library.

Petal has been a core part of the Reading to Dogs programme, where children read stories to dogs.

The programme was designed to encourage reluctant readers to actively read at their own pace by reading to therapy dogs.

Petal retired from the Reading to Dogs programme yesterday and the occasion was marked with a special celebration at the library.

Retiring . . . Petal and her owner Anne Davies. Petal celebrated her retirement from the Reading to Dogs programme at the Alexandra Library yesterday. PHOTO: SHANNON THOMSON

Owner Anne Davies said at 10 years of age, and with a bit of arthritis setting in on Petal’s handshaking leg, it was time for her to retire.

“It’s been a rewarding time for the children, and for us, it’s been wonderful,” she said.

Petals was looking forward to more time for walks and exploring her favourite shops in her retirement.