Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Holist Nurs. 2006 Mar;24(1):51-7.

Canine visitation (pet) therapy: pilot data on decreases in child pain perception.

Author information

  • 1San Diego State University, San Diego School of Medicine, San Diego, CA, USA.



To explore the effectiveness of canine visitation therapy (CVT) in pediatric pain management in a tertiary care children's hospital, a descriptive pilot study was conducted.


A convenience sample of 25 English-speaking children ages 5 to 18 years who underwent surgery and experienced acute postoperative pain participated in a standard, one-time CVT intervention. Each child completed a pre-post survey and a post intervention interview.


Quantitative pre-post findings indicate that CVT significantly reduced perceived pain. Qualitative findings suggest that one mechanism that makes CVT effective may be cognitive. That is, CVTdistracts children from pain-related cognition and possibly activates comforting thoughts regarding companionship or home.


The study findings suggest that CVT may be a useful adjunct to traditional pain management for children.


Nurses may better serve their patients when CVT is an option.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk