Rady Children’s Therapy Dog ‘Ollie’ helps children with vaccine aspiration one shot at a time

Rady Children’S Therapy Dog ‘Ollie’ Helps Children With Vaccine Aspiration One Shot At A Time

Ollie greets Tanner Rico, 16, as dogs return to the canine program at Rady Children’s Hospital with the easing of some of their COVID-19 restrictions in San Diego. REUTERS/Mike Blake

There is no hesitation about the vaccine like that of a 9-year-old girl staring into the sparkle of a hypodermic needle.

And there is no cure like Ollie, a 6-year-old goldendoodle therapy dog ​​who helps children with… Rady Children’s Hospital overcome the fear associated with getting a COVID-19 vaccine.

Ollie and 14 other dogs from the PetSmart Paws for Hope Canine Therapy Program are helping children ages 5 to 11 since they became eligible for the vaccine earlier this month.

Across the United States, adults are resisting shots of mistrust due to how quickly the vaccines have been rolled out, questions about potential side effects, or in many cases, fear driven by false rumours. Kids are just afraid it’s going to hurt.

The anticipation of a shot at Rady’s vaccine clinic made 9-year-old Avery Smith burst into tears. Then Ollie came in and sat down at her feet. Avery’s mother, Kelli Donahue, took a picture of her with the dog and Avery’s sister Olive, 6.

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