The benefits of Pet Therapy have long been recognized including reducing blood pressure, anxiety and even physical pain. The simple act of petting a dog can prompt the release of the ‘feel good’ hormones such as oxytocin and serotonin. On a recent visit to a Brisbane Hospital we couldn’t help but gaze at a photograph on the noticeboard of a lady in palliative care enjoying the company of her two dogs. With a background of the bed, medical equipment and monitors, one dog sat patiently by the bed whilst the other was lying beside her nuzzling her owner for a pat.
Dogs are sometimes able to bring a relaxing presence for humans who are on their end-of-life journey. Whilst it is not a possibility for all patients to be joined for a visit from their own pets, a select number of wards and hospices do allow registered therapy pets to stop by. How lovely, for someone facing enormous challenges to catch a moment of joy or find a distraction to help them forget their illness if only for a brief time. For some, the enjoyment is a mood-lift from the unconditional love dogs give; for others it is a reminder of the pleasure they experienced with their own dog.
George Wilson photographed here has been bringing this type of distraction for patients who have been delighted to see him. George is 42Kg of beautiful bulldog. He has been happily been sharing his gentle nature (and licks) with those patients needing a boost at Port Kembla hospital. Port Kembla is part of Wollongong in N.S.W.
His owner Jai doesn’t mind sharing her lovely dog with others because she can clearly see the joy George brings just by turning up. To see George in action doing a few daily rounds click on the link below…
Leah & Angela OMeara
Hound Dog Day Care (Specialists in Dog Minding & Dog Boarding, Pet Sitting Brisbane & Doggy Day Care Brisbane)