LITTLETON, Colo. (CBS4) – It’s been said that laughter is the best medicine, and at Children’s Hospital they’re delivering laughter in the form of pets.
Outside Deer Creek Animal Hospital in Littleton Sunday was an event some dogs dread. It was Children’s Hospital Colorado’s 28th Annual Dog Wash where people’s pets get cleaned up for a small donation that goes towards the Prescription Pet Program.
“We can support the Prescription Pet Program, both with money and dogs need a bath too,” Dr. Dan Brod with the Deer Creek Animal Hospital said.
Vets like Brod are the ones who certify volunteer dogs to visit sick kids at Childrens Hospital.
“Make sure they’re free of any illnesses that could be transferred from dogs to children,” Brod said.
“Our dogs visit patients in the hospital in their rooms, most of the time in their beds,” Ken Proch with the Prescription Pet Program said.
Proch said the idea of dogs visiting sick kids actually started back in 1984.
“We began because a physician actually wrote a prescription for a pet visit from a patient’s pet,” he said.
Proch said not only do young patients look forward to furry friend visits, but so do doctors.
“Petting an animal raises a patient’s oxytocin levels and their endorphin levels and it actually does exist in the healing process,” he said.
“It’s amazing how generous so many of the people are,” Brod said.
It’s generosity that vets, volunteers and patients hope continues for many years to come.
“We enjoy working with the people from Children’s Hospital,” Brod said. “It’s been a very rewarding experience.”
LINK: Prescription Pet Program