Dogs and cats are visiting their loved ones in hospital and it’s just what the doctors ordered! A hospital in Hamilton, Ontario is allowing pets to visit families when they are sick. Families can put their pets on the visitor’s list for Juravinski Hospital thanks to a program begun by Donna Jenkins.
Donna’s nephew Zachary Noble begged to see his dogs when he was at the hospital battling cancer. Although he passed away from the disease, Donna saw how much his visits with his dogs helped him and always led to improvements in his condition.
Donna founded Zachary’s Paws for Healing as a result and working with hospital executives, medical staff and infection control, Zachary’s Paws for Healing has become the first organization in Canada to provide patients with visits from their own pets.
Since the program began, 25 visits have taken place between Intensive Care patients and their pets. When the pets visit the hospital they are thoroughly cleaned and brought in on a covered, wheeled cart. They are kept away from all other patients during their one hour visits.
Pets and their parents are both benefiting from their time together! I certainly hope this type of program is adopted at more hospitals!
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