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Therapy pet volunteers sought for hospice program

Posted: Tuesday, Mar 5th, 2013

Therapy pet Robbi visits with a hospice patient. (courtesy photo)

When Robbi, an 11-year-old greyhound, and Ian, a 10-year-old blind cat, retired recently from their roles as pet therapy animals for Peace Harbor Hospice, Volunteer Coordinator Donna Becker knew she had important roles to fill.

Numerous studies have shown the positive effects that animals have on humans. Simply cuddling or petting an animal can reduce anxiety, lower blood pressure and heart rate and ease depression. Some hospice patients can turn inward and withdraw from loved ones and the world around them as a way to ease transition towards death.

Talking to loved ones might be difficult, but interacting with a friendly animal is easy and offers a temporary respite.

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For the complete article see the 03-06-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 03-06-2013 paper.

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