For kids battling cancer, sometimes the best medicine isn’t a drug, it’s a dog!
Therapy animals have been making the rounds at children’s hospitals for years and those who have come in contact with the loving, loyal dogs swear by the positive effects they have on the young patients who meet them.
But never before has a clinical study been started that would prove once and for all the power these pups have on the kids who spend time with them!
The American Humane Association has announced their plans to launch a research study that will examine how animal-assisted therapy (AAT) effects young cancer patients.
Scientists will study the physical and psychological effects of animal therapy on the child patients, their families and caregivers.
The director of the program, Amy McCullough, said they have a feeling the results will show that dogs can truly make a difference in these kids’ quality of life.
"Obviously, we know that the children like to see the dogs, but the folks in risk management want some clinical data.”
100 randomly selected children will participate in this study, with 50 receiving targeted visits from therapy dogs while the other 50 will receive standard treatment.
Aw! We feel so bad for the 50 kids who won’t get to spend time with these incredible creatures!
But we’re sure that after this study is done, there’ll be no doubt that dogs DO make a youngster’s hospital stay a much better experience during such a scary time!
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