Tuesday, November 08, 2011 - Broward Health Coral Springs Medical Center Hosts “Treats for Tricks” and 10th Anniversary Celebration of Pet Therapy Program

Coral Springs, FL - The hospital isn’t the most fun place to spend Halloween, but pediatric patients at Broward Health Coral Springs Medical Center (CSMC) received some “spooktacular” visits from furry friends bearing Halloween treats and toys.

Handlers with their dogs (L to R): Anne Saathoff  with Katarina; Ann Anderson with Mollie; Joan Fink with Cookie; and Terry Best with Koda. 

CSMC hosted its annual “Treats for Tricks” as well as a 10th anniversary celebration of their pet therapy program on October 31. The pet therapy dogs arrived in costumes and to give out treats to in-patient pediatric patients and those in the pediatric emergency department.

A brief ceremony was held in the playroom to recognize CSMC’s 10th year with a pet therapy program and their pet partners. Snacks, pet-shaped cookies as well as a special cake for the therapy dogs were served. Janice Zack, child life coordinator at CSMC, presented certificates of appreciation to four handlers and their pets for all they have done over the past ten years. Veteran Joan Fink and dog Cookie have had more than 125 visits in the hospital; Anne Saathoff and dog Katarina had more than 50 visits; Ann Anderson and dog Mollie had more than 25 visits; and Terry Best and dog Koda had more than 25 visits.

Zack announced the formal naming of CSMC’s pet therapy program at the ceremony. A fun challenge was given to the pet owners to create an official name for the program. “Paws-itive Healing Dogs (PhDs)” was chosen as the winner.

“We are so happy to have the love and support of our pet partners over the past ten years,” said Zack. “Pet therapy makes such a difference in the lives of our patients.”

Implemented in November 2001, CSMC’s pet therapy program helps patients physically, emotionally and socially. Studies have shown that pet visits reduce stress, lift spirits and promote healing in a comforting way to patients and their families.

Broward Health, providing service for more than 50 years, is a nationally recognized system offering world class health care services to our neighbors in South Florida. Broward Health includes Broward General Medical Center, North Broward Medical Center, Imperial Point Medical Center, Coral Springs Medical Center, Chris Evert Children’s Hospital, Broward Health Weston and more than 30 facilities of the Community Health Services and Broward Health Physician Group. For more information, visit