Dobson, an 11- year old Australian shepherd, recently joined the Ascension Pet Therapy Volunteer program at Ascension Saint Thomas Hospitals Midtown and West. Dobson has been a therapy dog for eight years.
Ascension Pet Therapy
Dobson got started on his journey in 2013 in Los Angeles, California, with his companion Nicholas Rose. He provided his friendly smile and calming energy at a wide range of facilities around the LA area, including many hospitals, college campuses, and end of life care facilities. From there, he returned to his hometown, Nashville, in 2016 and joined Ascension Saint Thomas in February 2022.
Dobson is one of many pets who volunteer through the Pet Therapy Volunteer Program. The Program started in 2011 as a way to provide pet therapy to both patients and associates. The mental health and physical benefits of interacting with furry friends is undeniable. New research suggests that older adults with a 4- legged companion showed slower mental declines than those without one. Our staff and patients have enjoyed seeing his friendly face in the hallways and have seen many benefits from this program.
The Pet Therapy Volunteer Program currently operates at the Midtown, West and Rutherford campuses.