Posted on August 2019 By Jamie Southwell
They go by the name Pets as Therapy and this charity’s goal is to bring joy and happiness to communities through the use of animals! It can often make the patient’s day, having a trusty animal to make you less lonely is something that we sometimes all need.
The national charity was initially set up in 1983 by Lesley Scott-Ordish, they set out on a mission to bring animals to the patients; giving residents the experience of love and companionship from something that isn’t often allowed in places like hospitals, hospices, nursing and care homes, and special needs schools.
In order for these cute little guys to participate in their charity work, they have to have been with their owner for at least 6 months, be older than 9 months of age, and need to pass the temperament assessment. The requirements make for a safe environment and makes sure nobody gets hurt, including the pets themselves. Whilst there are no strict limitations of how much a time an owner can let their pet spend with a patient, the charity has advised that it’s best to give your pets regular breaks and shouldn’t
have them working more than 2 hours at one given time.
One of these therapeutic sidekicks is called Alfie, a tiny pug who frequents the Royal Manchester Children’s hospital. From cuddling to playing, he’ll spend his days with lots of different kids at the Trust and having been a visitor for nearly more than 2 years, he has met his fair share of different faces. It goes without saying but all the children love spending time with Alfie and it really shows in the heartwarming pictures and videos provided by his owner on his social media accounts. Being quite the popular dog, racking up 126k followers on Instagram under the name @alfiethepug_beat
Alongside his hospital visits, he also travels to a lot of fundraisers and events. Just recently Alfie had the pleasure of attending Manchester Pride, representing his NHS trust by wearing his official badge. Fear not though as even though it was a hot day out for a dog, his owner came equip with a cooling jacket and plenty to drink.
Keep up the great work Pets As Therapy! We love seeing the joy and happiness that you bring to patients around the UK, hope to see more.