Therapy Horses Help Children Around The World

  •  Therapy horses help kids around the world
  •  M. Spencer Green

In this Nov. 13, 2014 photo, patient Emily Pietsch spends time with Mystery one of two miniature horses from ‘Mane in Heaven’ that made a visit to the pediatric unit at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. Mystery and Lunar, small as big dogs, are equines on a medical mission, to offer comfort care and distraction therapy for ailing patients. It is a role often taken on by dogs in health-care settings _ animal therapy, according to studies and anecdotal reports, may benefit health, perhaps even speeding healing and recovery. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green)

Though it may sound like one, this is no joke: Two miniature horses trotted into a hospital.

Doctors and patients did double-takes when the equine visitors ambled down long corridors in the pediatric unit at Chicago’s Rush University Medical Center. Wide-eyed youngsters hooked up to IV poles stepped into hallways to get a glimpse, and kids too sick to leave their rooms beamed with delight when the little long-lashed horses showed up for some bedside nuzzling.

Mystery and Lunar, small as big dogs, are equines on a medical mission to offer comfort care and distraction therapy for ailing patients. It is a role often taken on by dogs in health care settings — animal therapy, according to studies and anecdotal reports, may benefit health, perhaps even speeding healing and recovery. (AP)


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