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Elmhurst Memorial Hospital seeks therapy dogs

Published: Friday, July 11, 2014 11:34 a.m. CDT
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ELMHURST – Dogs are needed for Elmhurst Memorial Hospital's Animal-Assisted Therapy program.

The program is designed to comfort patients by reducing stress, pain, anxiety and blood pressure, and increasing social interaction and communication.

To be considered, dogs must meet the following requirements:

• Know sit, down, stay and recall on command

• Walk loosely on a leash without pulling

• Get along well with other dogs

• Perform required commands without treats

• Like people

• Not be overly vocal

• Be at least 1 year of age

• Be up to date on all vaccinations

• Free of skin problems

• Not wear prong collars, gentle leaders, harnesses or retractable leashes

Handlers, who must be 18 and older, and their dogs are encouraged to have completed a group obedience training class within the past year.

Applicants will be contacted in late fall to arrange a pre-screening. Dogs that meet qualification requirements will be scheduled for temperament testing on Nov. 8. Selected dogs and handlers must attend a mandatory three-day training in January at Elmhurst Memorial Hospital.

To apply, visit www.emhc.org/animal-assisted-therapy.

For more information, call Dee Panek at 331-221-1158.

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