Pets at Duke
The Pets at Duke program, offered through the Duke Cancer Patient Support Program, offers many benefits to our patients. Research shows that animal-assisted therapy, or pet therapy, is an effective form of psychotherapy intervention that reduces stress and depression. It also provides a sense of companionship that can combat feelings of isolation. The relaxation and feelings of connection that people feel with an animal -- in this case a dog -- facilitate healing and rehabilitation.
Participating dogs are 'therapy-certified'. Therapy dogs reside with their owner and complete additional testing on-site before being accepted to the Pets at Duke team.
Pets at Duke serve the following areas
Duke University Hospital
- Inpatient Adult Oncology (twice per week)
- Inpatient Pediatric Oncology (twice per week)
- Pediatric Intensive Care Unit and Pediatric Cardiac Intensive Care Unit (once per week)
Duke Cancer Center
- Duke Cancer Center Radiation Oncology clinic - 0-0 (twice per week)
- Duke Cancer Center Gynecology/Oncology clinic -2-2 (twice per week)
- Duke Cancer Center Brain Tumor clinic - 3-1 (twice per month)
- Duke Cancer Center Thoracic and GI clinic -3-2 (twice per month)
- Duke Cancer Center Oncology treatment room (once per week)
- Hock Inpatient Hospice Facility (once per week and 2 weekend days per month)
Additionally, Pets at Duke visit most areas of the hospital on a referral basis. These visits are based on handler/dog team availability.