Pet Therapy

I have been gone from my pet (Judah) for many days this past week.  My first real night with him was very special and I thought a lot about clients at the end of their life.

There was this deep connection of comfort, both for me and for him!  He laid on my chest and just looked at me for a long time.  My thought?  What if these were the last times I would see him, feel him, gain this level of comfort from him?

In hospice we see these last moments of love being given from pets to dying masters.  There may even be a protectiveness that is precious and important.  You can feel the trust and camaraderie.

After a love one dies, we ask families to let the pet smell their master or lay with the body, or do what ever the pet is needing to do.  We believe this helps them move on to let someone else be their master.  We actually have even learned that pets pass away soon after their master!

This pet therapy is emotional at times and greatly respected in my line of work.



  • Laura Felch

    Hi Jackie! Our hospital recently enacted a Pet Therapy program that allows animals on the Hospice floor and others when the need is there. It’s a great program and one that is really needed. So many of my patients are worried sick about the pets they have at home. It benefits the patient and the animal.
    Enjoying your thoughts!

    February 25, 2012
    • Great feedback Laura! I agree the many people are “worried sick” about their pets. Isn’t it great that pets can come to them in your hospital?! I love that! Kudos to your management!

      Fun to find out that you read my blog.

      February 26, 2012

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