For those who have to stay in the hospital for a long period, the Southampton Children’s Hospital in England has a dedicated staff of volunteer therapists who educate children and help them cope with pain, fear, and loneliness. Being in the hospital and having to stay there can be definitely scary and even stressful as it does not really have the comfort of home. However, patients have to deal with it as it is for their health. It is a good thing that there are these volunteer therapists who help them out.
These volunteer therapists are actually six golden retrievers that provide comfort to children and their families by giving their unconditional love and patience when needed most. They usually become a furry friend in the play area to de-stress with, a furry shoulder to lean on during treatment, or a patient friend to be there for the patients during different procedures that may seem a little frightening.
Recently, the canines have appeared in a series of videos and photographs to assist children to understand how certain procedures work. With these videos and photos, they help remove some of the dread and stigma associated with things such as the intimidating MRI machine and remaining still for X-rays.
These really good boys and girls look forward to expressing their unique brand of affection with the children and learning the names and room locations of patients with extended stays. They are always ready to go and help out these children.
Once the vest is off, it means that they are off duty. There is no doubt that these excellent volunteers always have a great time when they are not working. The handlers ensure that the dogs are well-rested and prepared for each visit by taking them on long and relaxing walks on the beach and even trekking the woods to allow them to unwind.
Source: SCH Therapy Dogs