Creativity Brand Purpose Creative Works

Pedigree encourages kids to read to dogs to increase child literacy rates


By Shawn Lim | Reporter, Asia Pacific

April 1, 2022 | 3 min read

Pedigree Petfoods has created a canine reading program for children in New Zealand to encourage them to read to a dog.

The program, called ‘Dogphonics’ and created by Colenso BBDO, aims to address children’s fears of reading aloud, leading to falling child literacy rates in the last two years. It wants to do this by having children read five books aloud to dogs.


The book titles include It Was Not Me, I Did Not Eat The Alphabet and Where Are My Pants?


Dogs were chosen after a study co-created by the Mars-owned brand and The Waltham Petcare Science Institute found that having a dog as a listener can improve a child’s sense of confidence, moderate feelings of anxiety and provide support.

The latest marketing news and insights straight to your inbox.

Get the best of The Drum by choosing from a series of great email briefings, whether that’s daily news, weekly recaps or deep dives into media or creativity.

Sign up

The book titles include It Was Not Me, I Did Not Eat The Alphabet and Where Are My Pants? and the set is on sale in selected bookstores and on Amazon. All proceeds from book sales go towards rehoming shelter dogs.

“Our purpose at Pedigree is to ‘feed the good’ dogs bring to the world. Hence, we have a long history of creatively celebrating not only how we as humans literally ‘feed the good’ in dogs, but how dogs also ‘feed the good’ in humans, as their lovable innocence brings out the best in us,” said Fabio Alings, global brand director for Pedigree at Mars.

“The Pedigree Dogphonics book set perfectly captures the essence of that purpose: dogs boosting the confidence of children who are learning to read, and young readers returning that favor by helping shelter dogs find a loving home to call their own.”

Pedigree: Dogphonics by BBDO

By Pedigree

Overall Rating 5/5

Vote now
Creativity Brand Purpose Creative Works

More from Creativity

View all


Industry insights

View all
Add your own content +