Our Shelter Pet Outreach Team
North Shore Animal League America’s Shelter Pet Outreach Team (SPOT)* program brings hope and love back into the lives of people who are alone, ill or live in specialized care facilities.
Each week our Pet Outreach volunteers and associates bring puppies and certified therapy cats to nursing homes, senior citizen centers, and rehabilitation centers. These types of animal-assisted activities have been widely recognized to have therapeutic effects, reducing stress and calming anxiety. These lovable animals put smiles on faces, and for those who are no longer able to care for a pet, they can help recall happy memories.
“My mom is 91. She fell and had to crawl to reach her med alert, causing her stomach to move into her chest. The surgeon said it was one of the biggest hernias he’d ever seen. The options were hospice or surgery. Of course, we chose surgery — very difficult for a 91-year-old to recover from. I visit her every day at the rehab center, sometimes twice a day. She’s been very depressed. She talked about death, wishing she’d died on the operating table. I cried a lot. I didn’t know what to do to help her. Then you showed up — with PUPPIES! Mom was allowed to hold and pet them. She cuddled them, she kissed them. Her whole mood changed. She is now trying to get well. She tells me that your group is coming again next month. She even requested a calendar so she can mark off the days until your visit. Please pass this on to the wonderful people who brought the puppies. I hope they know what a difference they’ve made in many lives. The most important, my mom’s. Your kindness and effort has touched our whole family. I thank you with all my heart.”
Londa Hackett, Huntington Station, NY
Please Support Our SPOT Program
You can help brighten the days of thousands of seniors and children with special needs by supporting the Animal League’s SPOT program.
Contact our Shelter Pet Outreach department for more information on our SPOT Program at [email protected].
*The SPOT program is not traditional pet therapy since it is not directed and/or delivered by a health/human service professional with specialized expertise as an integral part of the treatment process.