I work at Gateway Regional Medical Center mostly involved with the Behavioral Health Units and I have to say that Furry Friends Recovery is a fantastic addition to Gateway. I have been on the units when they visit and all the patients get a little happier when the dogs come walking in. I have even noticed that the more troubled patients during the day get a little happier when they are petting the dogs.
The Furry Friends staff is great with patients of all ages. While some patients play with dogs, others are talking to the owners and really opening up with them. The owners have had their fair share of tragedy growing up and the patients can feel far more comfortable when talking with someone who has lived so close to their own situations. When the owners explain that things do get better, it takes time but patients now have a more visible representation that this is not the end and that there is something better down the road.
There are quite a few patients that could benefit from this group and the volunteer opportunities that are available for them when they are discharged from the hospital. I think they will fair very well working with this amazingly positive group and their companions.