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Sarasota Memorial Pet Therapy Program


Studies have long shown the invaluable role of animals in supporting healing. At Sarasota Memorial, our pet therapy program has helped patients for more than 15 years. The pet therapists first started visiting patients in the hospital’s inpatient rehabilitation unit in 1997 to help people recovering from complex conditions who might be in the hospital for several weeks. Since then, the weekly visits have been expanded to the hospital’s Pediatric and Cancer units. Our volunteers and pet therapists also visit Sarasota Memorial’s Nursing & Rehabilitation Center off Clark Road.

Research has shown that pet therapy can produce physiological and psychological benefits, including reduced blood pressure and stress, as well as help promote a positive outlook on life, better outcomes in the healing and rehabilitation process and improved socialization skills. 

All of our Pet Therapy dogs are assessed through the Humane Society of Sarasota County and approved by a certifying organization. Both dogs and owners are approved volunteers with the Humane Society of Sarasota County and Sarasota Memorial Health Care System.