Dog Therapy – Helping to Heal

UCSF Dog Therapy for Children

Not long ago, the earthbath team was watching the news, and we saw a wonderful piece on Canine Companions for Independence (CCI). CCI is a nonprofit that is training therapy dogs to comfort children at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Benioff Children’s Hospitals as part of their Child Life Services program.

The healing power of therapy dogs

Dogs like Kimono, a 2-year-old yellow labrador/golden retriever mix, are trained to visit children in hospitals to lift their spirits and help them heal faster. Kimono performs more than 40 commands specifically designed to engage patients in activities that stimulate healing and recovery and alleviate pain.

We were intrigued to learn there are scientifically proven health benefits to this type of therapy. According to UCSF, “They go well beyond the love received from a furry companion. Animal-assisted therapy can improve blood pressure and cardiovascular health, increase endorphin release, encourage communication and movement, and decrease feelings of isolation and depression.”

Our team wanted to be a part of this amazing, life-saving project, so we sent them our natural grooming wipes, plus ear and eye wipes, to keep Kimono and his dog-friends clean between patient visits. We hope by helping to keep grooming costs down, more funds can be spent on these young patients.

How you can help

Despite the impact of the therapy and its benefits, few insurance companies will cover the cost of animal-assisted therapy, so UCSF’s program is fully funded by private donations. If you’d like to help support UCSF and their amazing Child Life Services program, click here.