I can’t remember a time in my life when I didn’t have a pet. I have always owned dogs; mainly Labrador Retrievers. At one point I even had a pretty little Maltese named Brooke. All of my fur babies hold a special place in my heart. I couldn’t imagine my life without them. Our current fur baby’s name is Grace. She is a black Labarador mix and a staple of our home. We adopted her as a puppy and has been there for us over the last 10 years, including through the birth of both of my children. I remember when I was sick in the hospital before giving birth to my first child. I hated being in that hospital room, cold and stark. I would have given anything to have Grace there by my side. While that wasn’t option for me, it may very well be an option for others. Purina is changing the future of pet therapy in hospitals, starting with a partnership with the St. Louis Children’s Hospital.
It has been long studied that spending time with our pets can reduce anxiety, depression, and pain in people with a wide variety of health ailments. The partnership between Purina and St. Louis Children’s Hospital has allowed an expansion and creation of the Purina Family Pet Center. This new center is only the fourth center of its kind in the world, and the only one in its region. It will allow children to be with their pets without having to leave the hospital and technology they so desperately need to stay healthy. “At Purina we believe that pets and people are better together, and our friends at St. Louis Children’s Hospital clearly share our belief,” said Nina Leigh Krueger, Purina president. “Our goal for the Purina Family Pet Center is to bring joy and comfort to children and their families by helping them reunite with their pets during their stay.” As this fire catches wind, the future for pet therapy in hospitals is bright! I know if I were able to have Grace at the hospital with me, it would have made a world of difference in my anxiety level alone. The video below shows just how much it means to a young patient to have her dog by her side during her hospital stay.
How does your pet make you feel better?