Norton Healthcare’s Heel, Dog, Heal facility dog program provides highly trained dogs and handlers to provide comfort and support to patients and families during their time of need.
What Is a Facility Dog?
Facility dogs are specially trained, employed staff members who partner with a handler to work in a health care or educational setting.
Norton Healthcare’s facility dogs and their handlers received extensive and specialized training in order to partner together to provide comfort and support to patients and families.
Why Offer Facility Dogs?
Research shows that full-time, trained facility dogs can motivate a patient to be more mobile, lend a paw during distressing or painful procedures, encourage socialization and offer a calming presence during episodes of pain and/or anxiety. Our special dogs also assist in creating an environment that offers unconditional love and acceptance.
Who Can Visit With a Facility Dog?
In order to receive a facility dog visit, a patient must:
- Have a treatment goal the facility dog can assist with meeting
- Need help coping before, during or after a procedure
- Have an extended hospital stay
- Not be in isolation
If a facility dog isn’t able to visit a patient, don’t be surprised to see our four-legged friends roaming around our Norton Healthcare facilities –– adult and pediatric –– or even heading to meetings.
Follow our facility dogs on social media at #HeelDogHeal.
Meet the Heel, Dog, Heal Facility Dog Team
Norton Healthcare employs nine facility dogs to support our adult and pediatric patients.