A CANINE cosmic experience awaits children and families at Kidderminster Library this week.

Trained therapy dog Bella is visiting Market Street dressed as a spacewoman to encourage children to read more.

The visit is part of the Summer Reading Challenge, a government reading initiative, which this year has a 'space chase' theme to mark the anniversary of the first moon landing.

Bella loves being read to, cuddled and fussed, and is used to working with young people with autism and dementia sufferers.

She will be visiting Kidderminster Library on Wednesday (August 21).

Councillor Lucy Hodgson, county cabinet member for communities, said: "We are really excited to have Bella, a fully trained therapy dog in the library.

"She is going to be dressed up in her spacewoman outfit and children are invited to come along and read stories to her.

"They can also give her a cuddle and have their photos taken next to our library rocket.

"We are promoting reading as part of the libraries space chase Summer Reading Challenge.

"Reading is fantastic for people's mental health, and so are animals.

"We think that working with Bella and her trainer is a great way of blending these two great forms of support in a fun, family-friendly way.”

There will also be a colouring competition with prizes to be won.

The session is a drop-in event and people can visit the library anytime between 10am and 12pm to sign up.

For more information, visit worcestershire.gov.uk/libraries or email kdlib@worcestershire.gov.uk.