Caring Canines Pet Therapy is a pet visitation program that serves to positively impact the patient experience. Pet therapy is proven to improve patient morale and emotional well-being by providing a focus of attention and the kind of unconditional love and acceptance that only a dog can provide.

Our Caring Canine teams serve on all floors of the hospital. We’re looking to expand the program so more patients can experience the benefits of this service.  Please review our requirements, then, if you feel our program is right for you and your dog, please complete the Caring Canine Program Volunteer Application.

Most volunteers serve one day a week for a few hours.  Scheduling is flexible, depending on the needs of the patients we serve.  If you have any questions, please contact us at volunteer@st-joseph.org or 979.776.5956.

How to Become a Caring Canine Volunteer.

Volunteers must complete and submit the Caring Canine Application through the volunteer website. Volunteer applicants are also required to submit a reference letter.

It is also required that each CHI St. Joseph Caring Canine Volunteer become an Aggieland Pets with a Purpose (APWAP) volunteer. It will be necessary for your dog to be tested and evaluated through their processes. You can learn more about APWAP through their website at http://apwap.org/

Each applicant is interviewed, and then scheduled for orientation. Orientation includes online and in-person training. Volunteers must submit to a background screening and are required to complete a mandatory TB test screening and flu vaccination (required October - March).

Dog Requirements:

  • You can view all the necessary requirements for your dog under the application Handbook section of the APWAP website: http://apwap.org/join.shtml

If you are interested and feel that you and your dog meet our requirements, please complete the online Caring Canines application. For more information, contact us at volunteer@st-joseph.org or 979.776.2917.