Home / Health / Veterans receive unusual visit, therapy dogs
Veterans receive unusual visit, therapy dogs
In late October, the director of VA’s Caribbean Healthcare System, DeWayne Hamlin, welcomed Dr. Mariane Cott, a volunteer at the Centro de Desarrollo Psico-Organizacional y Psicoeducativo (a mental health educational organization) in Puerto Rico, and PetSmart’s Puerto Rico general director, Julio Reyes to experience the benefits of pet therapy first-hand while treating different conditions experienced by Veterans.
“This program becomes the first and unique primary resource between human animal bond and animal assisted interventions, which will be a big contribution for our society and many professional settings,” said Cott, who volunteers each Tuesday at various clinics. “An animal assisted intervention brings positive behavioral support intervention for children, adolescents, young adults, adults, elderly people and our Veterans with severe emotional or behavioral problems, psychological and physiological support for the critically ill, elderly, physically impaired and others.”
Following the visit, Cott was surprised by Reyes after being presented with a $5,000 grant from PetSmart so she can continue assisting Veterans through her Volunteer Services.
This article was written by Joseph Rivera Rebolledo of the VA Caribbean Healthcare System