Sign In

Workers Get Canine Interactions

October 8, 2020

It was a long, boring spring and summer for the four-footed members of the Alliance of Therapy Dogs, who couldn’t visit nursing homes and hospitals giving tail wags and doggy smiles.

The coronavirus paused the professional canine therapeutic interactions with patients and hospital workers.

“You could actually see him falling into a depression at home,” said Wendy Kadish of York Township, describing her 8-year-old Rottweiler named Roman, who was unable to do his “job” as the pandemic wore on.

On Tuesday, Roman stood at the end of a long-stretched leash, absorbing delighted squeals and scratches from several hospital workers as Kadish talked about the days he couldn’t visit patients.The Alliance of Therapy Dogs was visiting UPMC Memorial in West Manchester Township for a pet parade on the sidewalks. Pet therapy has been suspended at the campus during the pandemic. The parade was a chance for hospital workers to take a break with 12 furry visitors.

“Our patients and staff miss having you guys and the pet therapy you give, the stress reduction for the staff, even for the patients when they are going through difficult times. We miss having you,” Joe Iandolo, hospital vice president of operations, told the group gathered.

For many of the dogs this was their first day back on the job in months.

Gemma Martin, who brought a 10-year-old big, fluffy therapy dog named Bella, said that some nursing homes were allowing window visits, but most medical facilities didn’t want therapy dogs on their grounds. “The dogs really miss it.”

“It’s therapy for me, it’s therapy for her and everybody who pets her,” Martin said.

Register Your Dog

  • Most Recent News

    Big Dogs Need Owners

    When the shutdown orders took full effect, it became nearly impossible to find a small dog available for adoption as Southlanders sought furry companions. In many Southland shelters, only larger breeds remained available for adoption. Now Los Angeles Animal Service is touting the joys of big dogs while offering discounted adoption fees for larger breeds […]

    Read more

    Service Dog Walkathon

    On Saturday, October 3, hundreds of walkers from across 15 states joined the path to bettering the world for children with autism and their families as part of BluePath Service Dogs’ fourth annual walkathon. The family-friendly fundraiser – this year held virtually – raised more than $120,000 to further BluePath’s mission of providing autism service […]

    Read more

    Service Dog In The Marching Band

    In a year that is anything but normal, the Jones College Maroon Typhoon Marching Band has welcomed its first known service dog member this fall. Laurie, a 3-year-old golden retriever, is baritone saxophone player Sara-Beth McKellar’s service dog. The Vicksburg native was diagnosed with epilepsy as a sophomore in high school after her first seizure. […]

    Read more

    Church Blesses Animals

    St. Mary’s Church of the Immaculate Conception in Port Jervis hosted a special outdoor service last Sunday afternoon to bless the community’s pets, animals and other living creatures. In keeping with current pandemic rules, pet owners wore masks, remained distant, and took part in praying for dogs, cats, turtles, and other pets and animals around […]

    Read more

    Police Welcome New Canine

    After the unexpected passing of longtime Police Service Dog Zeus earlier this week, Kingston Police are welcoming a new member to the Canine Unit. Police Service Dog Bask, also known as K9-8, is a Dutch Shepherd and Belgium Malinois mix, and will be patrolling the streets of Kingston with his handler Constable Jeff Dickson. Bask […]

    Read more

    Dog Park For Travelers

    St. Petersburg is widely recognized as a dog-friendly city, and St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport is making sure its four-legged visitors and their humans feel welcome by rolling out the artificial turf carpet. With the completion of the airport’s parking and roadway project – part of a series of multi-million dollar improvements at the airport over the […]

    Read more