Kokua Canine Program

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The Kokua Canine Program is comprised of teams of volunteers and their pets.  The teams are there to make patients smile. Benefits are many.

When calm, friendly, loving and well-behaved dogs visit and interact with patients and family members who enjoy animals they may improve the quality of life for each of them.

People of all ages, with all kinds of physical limitations, will open up to an animal. “They’ll talk to a dog, they’ll be more comfortable around a dog, their blood pressure may go down, they’ll smile, and their affect will change.”

Physical benefits: Exercise, pleasurable input, sensory stimulation, decreased blood pressure, comfort of touch, distraction from pain and distress.

Emotional benefits: Unconditional love and attention from the pet, spontaneous expression of emotion from the patient, reduced loneliness, decreased anxiety, increased relaxation.

Social benefits: Recreation, diversion and relief from boredom, monotony or isolation as well as the opportunity to communicate with the pet regardless of speech or hearing problems.

Cognitive benefits: Exercise of long and short-term memory with recollection and comparison of past experiences with program pets and/or their own household pets.

The dogs will have a well mannered reference letter from their veterinarian. They will also be interviewed with their guardian by the Hospice staff. The dogs will be current with their vaccinations, heart worm and flea prevention along with being freshly groomed and nails trimmed.

To make an appointment for a dog visit or more information call Adriana Degress, Director of Volunteer Services at (808) 324-7700 or email.