"I'm almost two! Check out my glamour shot from my trip to Estes Park (Colorado). 
I did an eight mile hike in heat and high altitude."

Northwest Broward Pediatrics is a pediatric practice in Coral Springs, on the corner of Royal Palm Blvd and Riverside Drive. We have many patients from the Parkland/Coral Springs/Coconut Creek area. We have a registered Therapy dog, full-time in our office. We believe we are the only pediatric practice in South Florida to have one. We are excited about it and the patient feedback has been very positive. 

The dog, a small King Charles Cavalier Spaniel named Penny is a certified Therapy Dog through Share-A-Pet organization and provides comfort when the children need to have painful medical procedures, vaccinations, blood tests, etc. Sometimes the patients just ask to throw the ball and play with her, making their visit a fun experience. We even have children that have invented symptoms just to come and play with Penny!

Medical science shows that interaction with a therapy dog can reduce blood pressure; promote physical healing; reduce anxiety, fatigue and depression; and provide emotional support. Therapy dogs love human contact and have no language barrier! Penny has a calming and therapeutic effect on our young patients!

What Does A Therapy Dog Do?
A therapy dog is a dog trained to provide affection and comfort to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, people with learning difficulties, and stressful situations, such as disaster areas.

Therapy dogs come in all sizes and breeds. The most important characteristic of a therapy dog is its temperament. A good therapy dog must be friendly, patient, confident, gentle, and at ease in all situations. Therapy dogs must enjoy human contact and be content to be pet and handled, sometimes clumsily.

A therapy dog's primary job is to allow unfamiliar people to make physical contact with it and to enjoy that contact. Children in particular enjoy hugging animals; adults usually enjoy simply petting the dog. The dog might need to be lifted onto, or climb onto, an individual's lap or bed and sit or lie comfortably there. Many dogs contribute to the visiting experience by performing small tricks for their audience or by playing carefully structured games.

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