Juravinski hospital in Ontario, Canada allows pets to visit their seriously ill humans.

The hospital adopted a program called Zachary’s Paws for Healing, launched by Donna Jenkins.

She was inspired by her 25-year-old nephew, Zachary, who benefited greatly from having his dogs around him while he was battling Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

“While Zachary was in the hospital for many weeks and very sick after having a stem cell transplant, he begged to see his dog, Chase,” Jenkins shared.

“We sneaked Chase into ICU to see him and the effect it had on Zachary was remarkable. When Zachary realized he was not going to survive his cancer, he made me promise to start the organization. We had our official first patient visit September 15, 2015.

“We know that when patients get to see their pet, it can improve vital signs, improve depression and the feeling of isolation, it opens communication back up and it is a reminder for a reason for the patient to get well and return home.”

The visits are weekly and they usually take 1 hour. The pets are thoroughly cleaned before entering the hospital and they are kept away from other patients.

Juravinski hospital in Ontario, Canada allows pets to visit their seriously ill humans

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The hospital adopted a program called Zachary’s Paws for Healing, launched by Donna Jenkins

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“When patients get to see their pet, it can improve vital signs, improve depression and the feeling of isolation,” Jenkins said

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“It opens communication back up and it is a reminder for a reason for the patient to get well and return home”

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“Having a pet visit its human brings some normalcy back to the patient’s life”

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“It takes their mind off the hospital and being sick for a bit”

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“The pet can visit for an hour and can come once a week… Of course, no one is keeping strict time. A good visit is what counts”

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“The pets are relieved to see them and to know they have not lost their human companion”

Watch the video here:

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Brent Lindeque
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and editor in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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