Advanced illnesses can take a huge emotional toll on the people who have them.  While physical treatments make up most of the care that patients with advanced illness receive, their mental health and well-being can’t be forgotten. Our mental health has a huge impact on us, and Capital Caring Health is dedicated to ensuring that our patients have resources that make them feel comfortable and at ease. Many services available today can help patients’ emotional well-being, a popular one being therapy dogs. 

Capital Caring Health offers therapy dogs in Virginia for patients and others who rely on our services to provide comfort and enjoyment when they need it most. We know the positive impact that therapy dogs can have and participate in the Pet Peace of Mind program, which teaches hospice care providers the importance of these services. 

Benefits of Therapy Dogs

Most people enjoy spending time around dogs. Whether you have a dog at home or see one passing by on the street, they can immediately boost our moods. Therapy dogs are even more beneficial to spend time around, as they’re trained to provide the right type of comfort for those who need it.  

Here are a few benefits that therapy dogs have to offer. 

Comfort and Support

One of the most obvious benefits of therapy dogs is the comfort and support they offer. Dogs can be extremely relaxing to be around, even in difficult times. Anyone who has had a dog of their own knows how comforting the feeling of having the unconditional love of an animal can be. Having a loyal pet by your side can help distract someone from everything, even if only for a few moments. 

Easier Communication and Socialization

Struggling with an advanced illness can make it difficult to communicate and socialize with others. This can often lead to people feeling alone and isolated, even when they have loved ones who care for them. Whether a person isn’t feeling up to conversing with others or is physically unable to, this can impact their emotional health. Therapy dogs, however, can be easy to engage with. Being around therapy dogs can make it easier for people to communicate and socialize with others. 

Provides Physical Comfort

Therapy dogs can provide more than just emotional comfort for patients. There are many ways we can physically feel comfortable, such as receiving a hug from a loved one. However, this isn’t always possible with an advanced illness. A therapy dog can provide gentle physical comfort, whether you’re petting them or letting them calmly rest their head on you. If the person is physically able, they may even enjoy playing with one of the dogs. 

Learn More About Therapy Dogs in Virginia

A positive outlook is extremely important for those dealing with an advanced illness or other difficult times, like after losing a loved one. At Capital Caring Health, we’re dedicated to providing high-quality care for our patients and their loved ones. We have locations throughout Virginia that provide services such as therapy dogs, including ones in Alexandria, Arlington, Fairfax County, Loudoun County, Culpeper, Manassas, Winchester, Fredericksburg, and Richmond

Contact us to learn more about Capital Caring Health’s therapy dog program.