Funeral Homes Providing Comfort with Therapy Dogs

Posted by Gayle Bennett

Funeral homes and therapy dogs: What a beautiful—and smart—combination.

The Boston Globe recently ran a story about how an increasing number of funeral homes in the state are “employing” therapy dogs to help their clients through their difficult times. The article notes that the National Funeral Directors Association has found, at least anecdotally, that over the past four years more funeral homes throughout the country have added these special employees.

At Dwyer Funeral Home in Pittsfield, Mass., Greyce, a 2-year-old Chesapeake Bay retriever, is available upon request. Owner Rob Dwyer “hired” Greyce to help children get through funerals, but he’s found that adults are just as comforted by her.

“There are some studies that point to an actual physical change in the brain of humans after being with a therapy animal,” said Deborah Linder, associate director of the Tufts Institute for Human-Animal Interaction, in the Globe article. “For those studied thus far, it appears that dogs can have a calming effect that actually changes our biology when we interact with them.”

Want to read about more of these furry funeral home employees? Check out these therapy dog profiles from funeral homes in Michigan and Indiana and these from the Washington, D.C.-area. And it’s hard not to be heartened by this video of Lulu, a therapy dog in New York.

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Gayle is a DC-based writer and editor who has covered topics ranging from education to real estate ... to now urns!" We welcome any questions or comments! Please email them to help@modernmemorials.com. 
By Gayle Bennett

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