Cincinnati Children's Blog

The Family Pet Center is Open!

The Family Pet Center is Open!
September 11, 2013

With much excitement and a bit of slobbery fanfare, the CancerFree KIDS & Impact 100 Family Pet Center officially opened this morning at our main campus. The ribbon cutting ceremony welcomed members of the CancerFree KIDS and Impact 100 organizations, as well as patient families and furry friends, to celebrate the space that will now give patients who stay with us for five days or longer an opportunity to visit with their own pets while they’re here.

Visits to the Family Pet Center will be coordinated through Child Life and will be reviewed by medical staff.

Within the first couple of weeks, a 14-year-old boy will have an opportunity to visit his beloved dog during one of his many 3+ week stays as an inpatient. Additionally, the team is working with the family of a 15-year-old girl who will be here in October for surgery. Her mom is thrilled to know that a visit with their family’s dog during her daughter’s post-operative recovery period may be a fantastic way to make the lengthy hospital stay more pleasant.

Here’s how the Family Pet Center will work:


Whose pet is eligible?
Patients who stay five days or more may be able to have their pet visit, if medical staff approves.

How do the logistics work?
Child Life will schedule and coordinate the visit. Once families request a visit and medical staff approves, families will receive a confirmation by phone or email with instructions.

On the day of the visit, a Child Life specialist will bring your child to the Family Pet Center, and a volunteer will meet you as you arrive with the pet to escort you to the center. Visiting families will be allowed to park in a designated spot by the Emergency Department entrance.

One adult family member must escort the visiting pet. Pets are not allowed to enter the medical center buildings or patient rooms, and pets cannot be left in a car unattended.

Which types of pets are allowed?
Dogs and cats. Infection Control must clear requests for other types of animals. Reptiles are not allowed. Families must answer questions about the pet before visits are approved. Pets should be current on vaccinations and bathed before a visit.

Contact the Family Pet Center
For more information, email or call 513-636-PETS (7387).

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