Pets on Wheels shares the love of friendly therapy pets to help improve life, connecting our pets with people to make a profound positive difference every day.
In the last year funds raised from individuals and workplace giving – like CCC – have enabled us to make both in person and virtual visits to a variety of settings, including assisting at vaccine sites during the pandemic.
Our visits make a real difference – just take a look at this note that was sent to us:
How Sarah the golden retriever helped me overcome deepest darkest moments
Yesterday approximately 4:30pm I’m laying in my hospital bed, lonely and depressed. Overwhelmed with life in general while being in excruciating pain. I didn’t at all want to be bothered but I hear a knock on my room door and before I could say “not right now or I’m sleeping could you come a little later”
I see an outline of a blonde 4-legged figure. Then I see these kind little black eyes with a nose/ head peeking around the door. As she comes in so quietly waging her tail, her owner introduces her.
She goes “her name is Sarah, she’s Golden retriever” she says to me as she walks Sarah up closer to me and my bed. Sarah gets a glimpse of what I had for lunch... she let’s me pet her and play with her for a min before she jumps down and stands next to her owner/mom. While she’s standing there I continue to pet her and talk with her owner/mom. Before she left to go visit other friends I was sure to take some pictures.
She lifted my spirit up so much to the point I had to see her once more before she left. From the time I met her to the time she left my room I forgot all about my pain and troubles. Sarah’s such a soothing dog. She’s so friendly, intelligent, soft, adorable & playful.
I just want to say thank you to Sarah and her owner for all that y’all do. Little did you know, I was on the verge of crying my eyes out just before I saw that golden little fury head poking around my room door. You both are amazing and deserve some kind of reward. I’m grateful that I was able to meet y’all both not once but twice in one day. I got to be around the joy Sarah brings wherever she goes. I truly appreciate y’all for stopping pass little ole me. Thank you for stopping me from shedding tears yesterday... y’all will never be forgotten.
Over the past decades, your support has enabled Pets on Wheels to help hundreds of thousands of people feel better. Pets on Wheels visits are most often made to residents in nursing homes, assisted living communities, hospitals, hospices and facilities for the physically and mentally challenged. Many of those we visit receive no visits at all from friends or family, and count a PoW visit as the highlight of their week. Our current visiting roster also includes veterans’ hospitals, homeless and domestic violence shelters, teen diversion programs, substance abuse facilities, programs for the homeless and children at risk of home outplacement, stress- free zones at local colleges during exam time, and library programs intended to help improve students’ literacy reading skills. During the pandemic we focused much of our outreach on our healthcare staff, and also added video visits that were a lifeline for our nursing home partners during the worst of the pandemic restrictions.
Our visits make such a difference because a therapy pet is love that you can touch. Our teams are supported by dedicated staff and volunteers that work tirelessly to coordinate visits, ensure our pets are up to date on all of their certifications and health requirements, and handle all of the administration and management to keep Pets on Wheels in compliance with all laws and regulations. Pets on Wheels currently makes nearly four times more visits, and manages five times more teams, than other local organizations with budgets five times as large as ours.