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Dogs improve the quality of stay of hospitalised patients

The image of a dog visiting a patient in a hospital a few years ago would have seemed like something wierd. But all animal lovers, especially those of us who have a dog in the family, understand, without needing any scientific proof, that it can be very beneficial. The good news is that it has been proven to be true.

The presence of dogs in hospital settings is no longer a rarity but an increasingly common therapeutic practice. The presence of dogs in hospital settings is no longer a rarity but an increasingly common therapeutic practice. Dog-assisted therapies implemented in hospitals have demonstrated a number of significant benefits for the mental and physical health of patients. Specifically, dog-assisted therapy in healthcare facilities is a valuable resource to improve the experience of those facing long stays or delicate procedures..

Proven benefits

Professionals in charge of these programmes claim that visits from dogs not only decrease the anxiety of hospitalised patients, but also instil a sense of optimism regarding their recovery or the operations they may face. In fact, many express the desire to adopt an animal when they leave the hospital, serving as a powerful motivation to move forward in their recovery process.

Breaking the routine and motivating people to get moving

In addition to the emotional benefits, canine visits break the monotony of hospital admissions. For patients who are able to walk, the presence of these furry friends motivates them to take walks, encouraging physical activity and contributing to a faster recovery. This mental and physical stimulation translates into an overall improvement in patients’ health.

Rigorous selection of therapeutic dogs

Not all dogs are suitable for this type of therapy. Presence in a hospital environment requires animals that are calm, used to dealing with people, have no tendency to bark and are able to cope with the hospital environment with its noises and smells. Other qualities of therapy dogs include a predictable, balanced and fearless character.

There is no restriction on therapy dog breeds, but it has been shown that Labrador retrievers and Golden retrievers are the most suitable because of their sociability, German shepherds because of their balanced character, and spaniels and cockers because they are very affectionate.

In summary, dog therapy in hospital settings not only offers tangible benefits for the mental and physical health of patients, but also adds a touch of joy and motivation in difficult times. Dogs make great life companions!

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