When you or a loved one struggles with an advanced illness, therapy and emotional support are extremely important. The physical health of people with serious illnesses is always a priority, but their emotional health and well-being also need to be looked after. Today, therapy and emotional support come in many shapes and sizes to help those who need it. If you’ve ever had a pet, you know the positive impact they can have. Because of this, therapy dogs have become a more common way of providing support.
Therapy dogs can bring a great deal of comfort for those battling serious illnesses. At Capital Caring Health, we offer therapy dogs in Washington, D.C., as a service for our patients. We’re the first hospice in the area to participate in the Pet Peace of Mind program, which provides patients in hospice care around the country with therapy dogs.
How Do Therapy Dogs Help?
When you think of the care given for advanced illnesses and medical conditions, you might not think of getting to spend time with animals. Therapy dogs might not seem like a typical form of therapy, but they can be very effective. The relationship we have with animals is special. Part of what being around a dog is so enjoyable is the unconditional love they provide. Dogs used for this therapy aren’t like your typical pet, either. Therapy dogs are trained for this service, so they know how to respond to signs of anxiety and depression to provide emotional support when it’s needed. With a therapy dog, you can spend your time being playful or enjoy a quiet moment relaxing with them.
Therapy dogs can provide support for many of our hospice patients and others who use our services. Nearly anyone who needs comfort can benefit from petting, or simply being around a therapy dog. If a patient has communication issues due to their illness, a therapy dog can be beneficial. Regardless of how you’re able to communicate with other people, forming a connection with a therapy dog is easy for anyone. Of course, many children look forward to any opportunity to pet and play with a dog. Therapy dogs are often used for breathing children to provide comfort and companionship as they go through this difficult moment. These dogs can help distract us from some of our worst moments and instantly improve our moods.
Learn More About Therapy Dogs in Washington, D.C.
At Capital Caring Health, our goal is to do whatever we can to provide comfort to those with an advanced illness or people who have lost a loved one. There are many ways we can go about doing this depending on a person’s individual needs, but few things compare to the loyalty and love a dog can provide. Dealing with stress and other emotions that can come from struggling with an illness can take a huge toll on anyone, and the comfort of a trained therapy dog can provide some relief.
Volunteers play an important role at Capital Caring Health and in our therapy dog program. Our volunteers help make the program possible.
Contact us to learn more about our therapy dog program.