Local Organization Uses Therapy Dogs to Spread Joy
(MANKATO, Minn) - The Mankato Area Life-Long Learners had a visit from some furry friends.
Mankato's Chapter of Paws for Friendship has been visiting people around the area since 1984 bringing joy in the form of a four-legged friend.
Therapy dogs that the organization works with are trained and tested to provide emotional comfort to those who might need it.
"As a therapy dog they are different than a service dog. A therapy dog is to bring therapy to you, not to me," said club president Linda Murray. "A service dog would be here to bring therapy to me, so that's the difference."
Wednesday, members of Mankato's Life-Long Learners got to see first-hand how these therapy dogs work.
"Part of what we do is not only do we tell what the dogs are doing but the big thing is we allow people to see dogs moving and playing," said Barb Maher of Paws for Friendship. "Then we also let them come and pet the dogs."
On visits, the dogs and their owners travel anywhere from the children's museum to hospitals and schools.
The owners say one thing is consistent with every visit and that is the smile on someone's face when they get to pet a dog.
"It's just so heartwarming to go in and have somebody who might be going through surgery in the hospital and they'll just say 'Oh I miss my dog so much, I just want to pet your dog for a few minutes,'" said Maher. "And when we leave it comes to often they'll say 'This was the best thing that happened to me today'."
----KEYC News 12