Visiting the VA

The nurse knocks on the door, “Knock, knock, do you want a special visitor?” A grumpy ugh is let out from the other side of the door.

“Oh come on, we’re coming in to see you,” says the nurse as she opens the door.

The patient on the bed all of a sudden sees who the visitor is and his face lights up. His visitor is our mini-palomino Gigi! Not the visitor he was expecting at all. She calmly walks to his outstretched hand as he pets her mane and tells her what a sweet girl she is. We are all smiling and happy for the moment.

This is Gigi’s job. She is a therapy horse and has a schedule of visiting people that might need uplifting and healing. To be sick often means to be stuck in the sickness and the cycle of worry, dread, and depression. When Gigi is around, it feels as though the heaviness disappears for a moment as patients are fully integrated in the present moment. They feel the wave of contentment brought on by animals.

We know that animals are soothing to people. When you pet an animal, oxytocin is released into your bloodstream, a hormone thought to be responsible for happiness and contentment. Breathing regulates and the heart beat slows. Blood pressure lowers.

Gigi loves her tours of the hospitals, and so do the patients. If you are interested in having us bring one of our therapy horses to you, please click here to fill out a request.

Last Modified on June 2, 2017
this article Visiting the VA

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