Dogs make people happy. That's why you'll see tiny Yorkshire Terriers and giant English Mastiffs roaming the halls and lobbies at Edward. They're part of the Animal-Assisted Therapy program. Our dogs and their handlers have visited more than 180,000 patients over the last 13 years.
PHOTOS: ANIMAL-ASSISTED THERAPY AT EDWARD HOSPITAL
How it works
Our dog/handler teams visit patients, at their request, in just about every part of the hospital every day of the week. The visits usually last about five or ten minutes. We also have special programs for our dogs who meet with behavioral health patients from Linden Oaks Hospital.
Watch a video and learn more about the benefits of an animal-assisted therapy visit.
How to apply
Temperament Testing for new dog/handler teams will be held later in 2015. Before you apply, click here and review qualities of an "A+ Therapy Dog." If you and your dog would like to be part of our program, complete the volunteer application or call Cynthia Brooks, Program Administrator at 630-527-7335 for more information. Applicants must fill out an on-line application and be prescreened prior to getting a Temperament Testing appointment. Applicants must be available for training sessions held on the Edward campus Wednesday October 7th 6:00-8:30pm, and all day Saturday & Sunday November 7 & 8 to obtain a Temperament Testing appointment.
There's science to back us up, but the bottom line is our patients feel better when our dogs are in the neighborhood. Thinking less about their illness also means less anxiety, pain, blood pressure and loneliness. Our teams also attend community events and visit schools in the community.