Every Wednesday patients are visited by Bruce! Bruce is a hypoallergenic Golden Doodle certified by the Alliance of Therapy Dogs. His friendly, affectionate, and gentle nature are comforting to patients, especially patients on our EAC and Adolescent units. Bruce helps to make a potentially long stay feel a little more like home.
The use of pet therapy for patients suffering from a mental illness is shown to have positive effects on their overall well-being by providing emotional care and support. Pet therapy has consistently shown positive patient outcomes (Hundley, 1991).
Pet therapy is beneficial not only to the patients, but also to hospital staff. The use of pets as therapeutic agents is shown to increase morale, attentiveness, and self-awareness in behavioral health settings (Rossetti, DeFabiis, Belpedio, & Camille, 2008).
Hundley, Jamie,M.S.N., R.N.C.S. (1991). Pet project: The use of pet facilitated therapy among the chronically mentally III. Journal of Psychosocial Nursing & Mental Health Services, 29(6), 23-26.
Rossetti, Jeanette,EdD., R.N., DeFabiis, Susanne, MS,R.N., B.C., & Belpedio, Camille, MS,R.N., P.M.H.C.N.S.-B.C. (2008). Behavioral health staff’s perceptions of pet-assisted therapy: AN EXPLORATORY STUDY. Journal of Psychosocial Nursing & Mental Health Services, 46(9), 28-33.
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