Who says you need a lab coat to offer good medicine? Sometimes you just need a lab – Labrador retriever, that is. Or a poodle, a weimaraner, a golden retriever, or any of the various breeds that make up the therapy dog program at St. Louis Children’s. For over 25 years, these special dogs have visited several of the hospital’s outpatient clinics, as well as the inpatient floors.
In addition, St. Louis Children's Hospital has the Purina Family Pet Center. This dedicated space combines family-centered care with the healing power of the human-animal bond, allowing patients to visit with their own pets while they are in the hospital.
Pet therapy is one component of St. Louis Children’s Healing Arts program, which also includes art therapy, music therapy and horticulture therapy. The Purina Paws for Hope program and its volunteers provide a familiar distraction in an otherwise unfamiliar environment. The ultimate goal is to have this type of therapy assist a child’s recovery emotionally, mentally and physically.
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