CHICAGO – Mystery and Lunar, two miniature horses, made a surprise visit to Chicago’s Rush University Hospital. They are two equines on a medical mission. Mystery and Lunar are two of the horses at Mane in Heaven, an Animal Assisted Therapy Group in Lake in the Hills.
“We have long had animal-assisted therapy here at Rush and just seen the enormous benefits that animals can have on most children – just the joy that they bring, the unconditional love,”
said Robyn Hart, the hospital’s director of child life services. Most children and even many adults have never seen a miniature horse. Their presence brings a fairy tale to life for those that are ill.
Research has shown that animal-assisted therapy can reduce pain and blood pressure. Animal Assisted Therapy also decrease stress in hospitalized children. The children are allowed to scratch the horses soft ears, hug the fluffy manes and get up close to these magical horses.
Dogs have long been used in assisted animal therapy. Now these miniature, almost fairy tale like, horses bring smiles to all the patients they pass on their walk around Rush University Hospital. Mystery and Lunar were such a success that the hospital hopes to have them back on a monthly basis.
Source: Lindsey Tanner on the MS News Now website: Horse trots into hospital: It’s therapy, no joke