Allison Perry

Pet Therapy Provides Stress Relief for Markey Inpatients

Published: Jan 23, 2013

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Jan. 23, 2013) — It's a sound that might seem out of place in a hospital setting, but when UK Markey Cancer Center patient Carla Tufts hears two sharp barks from the other side of her wall, she smiles. Clyde, one of two pet therapy dogs who regularly visits inpatients at Markey, is on his way.

 

"It just brightens your day," she said.

 

Clyde's owner, UK HealthCare volunteer Ellen Karpf, brings him into the room. Wearing a royal blue UK sweater, Clyde counts for Carla (by barking), "says his prayers," and eagerly approaches her for some petting and a treat.

 

This has been the routine every Thursday for Karpf, who for the past two years has brought either Clyde or his sister Bonnie, both golden retrievers, to Markey for the pet therapy visits. She also brings one of the dogs to Kentucky Children's Hospital on Tuesdays to visit pediatric patients.

 

"The dogs love it," Karpf said. "They get excited; they fight over who's coming that day when I take out the fanny pack with the treats and the credentials. We've had some really neat experiences with patients."

 

Pet therapy can help people recover from or better cope with health problems, and the goal is to improve a patient's social, emotional or cognitive functioning. For many patients, a visit with one of the therapy dogs provides much-needed stress relief during their stay. For others, the dogs provide just what they need to help cope.

 

"Once there was a little girl getting chemo — and they said, 'You'll never get this child to smile,'" Karpf said. "Clyde walked in and she threw her arms around him and just hugged him. I couldn't get him out of the room! We went in to see somebody else, and he just pulled me right back to her."   

 

For Markey patient Lucy Williams, the visit with Clyde reminded her of her own furry therapist waiting to dote on her when she goes home to recover.

 

"It's nice, I think it's a great idea," Williams said. "I have a two-year-old English lab at home, and jokingly we said what a great companion dog he's going to be for me, because I've got kind of a long journey ahead of me."

 

 

For a transcript of this video, click here

 

Karpf, Clyde and Bonnie provide their services through the UK HealthCare volunteer office. To become certified pet therapy dogs, both Clyde and Bonnie completed the Love on a Leash program here in Lexington. For more information on that program, visit www.loalcky.com. For more information on how to become a UK HealthCare volunteer, visit ukhealthcare.uky.edu/volunteer or contact Bonnie Thornton at bthor@uky.edu.

 

MEDIA CONTACT: Allison Perry, (859) 323-2399 or allison.perry@uky.edu

 

9.jpg10.jpg14.jpg
File Downloads
July
 
 
1
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Tue
2
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Get Moving - A Walking Group for Caregivers
Wed
3
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Thu
4
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Fri
5
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sat
6
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Artful Sunday: Benday Dot Day
Sun
7
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Mon
8
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Tue
9
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Get Moving - A Walking Group for Caregivers
Wed
10
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Thu
11
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Fri
12
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
International Youth Water Justice Summit
Sat
13
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sun
14
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Mon
15
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Tue
16
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Get Moving - A Walking Group for Caregivers (with Dr. Greg Jicha)
Wed
17
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Thu
18
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Fri
19
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Color Water Balloon Fight
Sat
20
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Summer Salon: Landscape as Subject with Tom Barnes, Photographer
Sun
21
EPIC Ministry Weekly Gathering
Mon
22
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Tue
23
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Get Moving - A Walking Group for Caregivers
Wed
24
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Thu
25
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Fri
26
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sat
27
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Sun
28
 
Mon
29
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Tue
30
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Get Moving - A Walking Group for Caregivers (with Mary Crowley Schmidt)
Wed
31
Landscape/Mindscape: Selections from the Wells Fargo Collection
Thu
 
 

Repeats every day on May, June, July, August every Tuesday and every Wednesday and every Thursday and every Friday and every Saturday and on the first Sunday until Sun Aug 17 2014 .
Tue, 07/29/2014

Repeats every day on May, June, July, August every Tuesday and every Wednesday and every Thursday and every Friday and every Saturday and on the first Sunday until Sun Aug 17 2014 .
Wed, 07/30/2014

Repeats every day on May, June, July, August every Tuesday and every Wednesday and every Thursday and every Friday and every Saturday and on the first Sunday until Sun Aug 17 2014 .
Thu, 07/31/2014

Repeats every day on May, June, July, August every Tuesday and every Wednesday and every Thursday and every Friday and every Saturday and on the first Sunday until Sun Aug 17 2014 .
Fri, 08/01/2014

Reset Page