Orlando Health Pet Therapy Program
Pet Therapy Teams Provide Animal Assisted Therapy
Orlando Health pet therapy teams engage in both Animal Assisted Activities and Animal Assisted Therapy. They currently have 60 teams making over 50,000 pet therapy visits each year at six different hospitals and various clinics. Their canine therapists may not have MD’s but they do have impressive credentials. They are sensitive, loving and they know how to sit, stay, come and walk on a loose leash. They are controllable, predictable, reliable and responsive to their handlers. They are registered with a national organization, and genuinely look forward to visiting with hospital patients and team members. They are fearless of hospital noises, love to ride the elevator and don’t mind being groomed before each visit. When they visit patients or team members they show love and affection, and they are “tail wagging” happy. They have a language all their own that delivers the best medicine, a smile. Handlers are an equally important part of the Pet Therapy team. The handler must possess the skills and knowledge required to visit patients in various types of medical facilities and often in challenging situations both emotionally and physically. Their handlers are people oriented; enjoy listening, and show great empathy and compassion for others. The handler must also have good control of their animal and communicate clearly with their animal at all times. Orlando Health is proud to have these wonderful animals and their dedicated handlers visiting with patients and team members on a daily basis.