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 20 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, as well as Sarasota Memorial’s Nursing & Rehabilitation Center off Clark Road.
Hospital staff and visitors can also enjoy some canine cuddles during our weekly Pet Paws events in HealthConnection, offered in partnership with the Humane Society of Sarasota County. Check the SMH calendar for upcoming dates.
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.