Our sincere thanks to all the volunteers and
team for another successful evaluation. Our
benefited us with 16 new dogs. 12 new
have entered the probationary phase of our
All the volunteers did a wonderful job
On Saturday, January 17, our trainers Pam
and Rebecca Breaud held our New Pet/Handler
Workshop. Malay Ghose Hajra with Mita and Pam
with Jake served as our workshop demo teams. Our
new volunteers left the workshop more
much more prepared to start their visiting
Thanks to all who attended the Recertification
Workshop and assisted the new volunteers and
Thanks in advance to all the volunteers who have
graciously offered to mentor the newcomers. Your
skills and instruction are greatly needed,
and you will
be helping the new volunteers and pets begin
visits on a good start. Your willingness to
knowledge with our newest volunteers is deeply
New this year is the online Pet/Handler Team
Scoring Form, now available on the website.
make it easier for buddies to complete their
evaluation forms and get them to me
ATTENTION NEW VOLUNTEERS
Please confirm your visits with me only by
You will need to give me 3 choices of dates and
facilities so that I can arrange buddies for you.
Joyce Kleinfeldt, Program Coordinator
Schedule for Spring 2009
To Joyce to schedule your visits
To the web site
Pet Program web site
|VALIDATION FOR PET VISITS
Carl Schindler looks on as Comet gets a
big hug from a resident at John Hainkel
We all know what qualities our pets
being good pet therapists. Our pets are warm
fuzzy, they are nonjudgmental, attentive,
listeners, and sometimes downright silly.
All of these
attributes help to cheer up the people they
there has also been some interesting research
on regarding Animal Assisted Therapy.
In 2004, a group of physicians in Japan
effects of a therapy dog on autonomic nervous
system in normal healthy adults. They
effect by measuring heart rate variability
spectrum analysis. This investigation
sessions, one session with a dog and a control
session without a dog.
Assisted Therapy with a dog had a positive
activating the effect of cardiac
activities in the heart.
In 2007, a group of physicians in California
determine the affect Animal Assisted Therapy on
patients hospitalized with heart failure.
was to determine if a hospital visit with a
would improve hemodynamic measures, lower
neurohormone levels and decrease state
patients with advanced heart failure. Three
were tested, one group visited with a human
and her therapy dog, another group visited
human volunteer only and the control group
had "usual care" with no visit.
pressures and neurohormone levels were monitored
in all patients.
Therapy improves cardiopulmonary pressures,
neurohormone levels and anxiety in patients
hospitalized with heart failure.
Also in 2007, a group of physicians in
the impact of Animal Assisted Activities on
patients undergoing chemotherapy. Two groups of
patients were compared. The experimental group
visited with a therapy dog and the control
group did not
visit with a dog. Before and after chemo
completed a symptom questionnaire. In
groups were monitored for arterial blood
heart rate and oxygen saturation.
conclusion: Animal Assisted Activity during
chemotherapy reduces depression of patients and
increases their arterial oxygen saturation.
In 2002, physicians with the V.A in Missouri
the effects of Animal Assisted Therapy on
in elderly in long term care facilities. The
chosen for this study had a strong life
emotional intimacy with pets and wished that
currently had a pet. They also completed
Scale" questionnaires prior to beginning the
again 6 weeks later at the end of the study. A
comparison was done between the group that
received Animal Assisted Therapy visits and
that did not receive visits.
group that received Animal Assisted Therapy
had significantly reduced loneliness scores in
comparison with the group that did not
When we visit with our pets, we witness
the positive impact our pets have on people's
But these types of research are very
important for the
growth and longevity of Animal Assisted
hope you found these examples as interesting
|VPP VOLUNTEER APPRECIATION DAY
Volunteers and pets swarm Soniat
Playground for the annual Volunteer
Celebrating 22 years of
Visiting Pet Program!
Come on out and join the fun and help VPP
22 wonderful years. Soniat
Playground in Harahan will again be the site
VPP Volunteer Appreciation Day on Sunday,
March 22, 2009 from 1pm-3pm. A map to Soniat
Playground is linked
All VPP volunteers, certified and
their family and guests are invited. VPP dogs
have completed certification are
Unfortunately, we cannot invite dogs that
certified through our program. All dogs must
remain on leash throughout the entire event and,
just like on visits, only one dog per
always, flexi-leashes are not permitted.
volunteers are asked to wear their green VPP
Bring the kids and your own chairs or a
sit on and enjoy an afternoon of fun. VPP will
provide sandwiches, snacks and soft drinks.
have access to two covered shelters and a
gym for the kids.
Please confirm your attendance (note how
many family members will attend) by email to
firstname.lastname@example.org. To be sure there is enough
food for everyone, we need an accurate head
later than March 15th.
We look forward to seeing everyone!
to Soniat Playground, Harahan
|MEET THE NEW VOLUNTEERS
Kimberley Clayton with Kubby, the
chocolate Lab Kimberley is a CPA and
Comptroller for Lauricella Land Company. She
belongs to a local AKC Agility Club. She
park hikes. Kubby goes to work with Kimberley
day. He is active in obedience and agility,
Leigh Crawford with Zeke, the Golden/Lab
mix Leigh operates the Elysian
She enjoys gardening, cooking, and art. Zeke
the Barkus Parade yearly. He likes going to
events, and loves getting a belly rub.
Midge Donald with Blue, the Weimaraner
Midge is retired from Citibank New
She is a volunteer with the Audubon Zoo. Midge
enjoys attending NBA games. Blue likes going for
neighborhood walks and trips to Petco.
Susan Falcon with Calli, the white Peke-A-
Poo Susan is a self-employed CPA. She
enjoys reading and running. Calli likes
soccer events and sporting events. She enjoys
Tamara Fink with Nikki, the
Dachshund/Chihuahua mix Tamara is a
realtor with Latter and Blum in Mandeville.
She is an
avid animal lover, with dogs, guinea pigs,
fish. She is a volunteer crisis line
counselor at a
battered women's shelter. Nikki was adopted
Florida animal shelter. She likes seeing the
neighbors and greets visitors to the home.
Joel Lippincott with Candy, the
Retriever Joel works in the
billing office for a
dermatology group. She is a mother of 3. Candy
shares his home with several cats. He likes
Monique McKenna with Jazz and Meghan, the
German Shepherds Monique is a non-
practicing attorney who has raised three
Dogs. She also volunteers with STAIR and an ESL
program with Associated Catholic Charities.
Meghan have attended obedience classes and have
had extensive Seeing Eye training.
Cindy Nolan with Dexter, the
Lab Cindy is a dental hygienist.
active with her church's youth group. Dexter
obedience classes. He likes going for daily
along the levee and at dog parks.
Lyn O'Brien with Oscar, the Mixed
Breed Lyn is a legal secretary for a
Downtown law firm. She has volunteered for
LePetite Theatre, Big Sisters, and other
was found as a young pup wandering the
found a terrific home with Lyn. Oscar enjoys
participating in the Krewe of Barkus Parade.
Maria Thornton and Craig Miller
Sable, the Pomeranian Maria
Magnolia School, with adults with
makes jewelry in her spare time, and enjoys
Craig is a process server for Support
Services. He also volunteers at Magnolia
enjoys cooking and running. Sable enjoys
walks in the
neighborhood and going to Petco and the
Julie-Ann Wegmann with Oscar, the
Maltipoo Julie-Ann is a teacher of
needs children. She enjoys biking and walking.
Oscar has taken an obedience class. He enjoys
doing tricks. Oscar likes going for walks and
CURRENT VOLUNTEERS ADD PETS
Leslie Davis with Bacchus, the
Smooth Standard Dachshund.
the son of Leslie's red Dachshund, Zebrina,
who is a
regular visitor at John Hainkel Home.
Tobi Provenzano with Cayenne, the
Shepherd mix. Tobi visited with
Maddie, who passed away two years ago. Tobi is
happy to have another dog to put through the
Fay Schultz with Betty Boop, the
Chihuahua mix. Fay visits at
her Shih-Tzu, Mozart and at Waldon Health
JJ, the Toy Poodle. Betty Boop is the newest
Stacey Warnke and Terri Joia with
Corgi mix. Stacey and Terri visit
Marie with their cat Sauvi. Angelle will join
cat "sister" on visits.
|2010 CALENDAR CONTEST
As an opportunity to share our work and our
wonderful animals with the community, the
Visiting Pet Program is going to create a
2010 calendar with photos of our very special
In an effort to find the best
for the calendar, we will offer a photo
contest. Rules of the contest are listed
below. Get your camera out and start
shooting. It's a wonderful opportunity for
Fido's 15 minutes (or 12 months) of fame!
Serving as independent judge for the photos
will be professional pet photographer, Scott
Stuntz. He will select the 12 monthly photos
as well as the cover shot.
All photo entries received will become
property of the Visiting Pet Program and can
be used for promotional purposes. Neither
the pet nor the owner of the pet will receive
monetary compensation for appearance in the
calendar. By submitting your photo and
payment, you agree to the above.
If your pet's photo is included in the
calendar you will receive a free calendar and
12 months of bragging rights! Good luck!
- Photos are due on or before March 1,
2009. Photos should be submitted in digital
format to email@example.com. Only emailed
photos will be accepted.
- Photos must be in a high resolution
digital format. Calendar format will be 8in x
10in, landscape. Your photo should be able to
be blown up to that size without distortion
- Photos done by professional
photographers will not be accepted.
- Currently active Visiting Pets only. No
retirees, no probationary pets.
- Photos must be of pet(s) only. No
people or non-VPP pets may be included
- One photo submission per pet
- Entrance fee is $25.00 per photo.
Payment will be accepted through PayPal or
via check mailed to 5831 S Johnson St., NOLA,
70125. Photos and your payment MUST be
received no later than March 1st. Do Not Mail
- Winners will be announced at the
Visiting Pet Program Volunteer Appreciation
Picnic on Sunday, March 22, 2009.
received from the children of
Bud and Winnie Lee
in honor of their parents, and in memory of
Gunny, Jazz, and
Donations were received in
from Claire Sommers, Lee and Tom
and Kim Pizzo.
was received fromTom and Lee
A donation was
in honor of
Annemarie and Bert
and their dogs
Lexi and Lucy
A donation was
Sue and Bob Wood
in memory of former VPP memberEsther
|About the Visiting Pet Program
The Visiting Pet Program
is an all
(C)(3) non-profit animal assisted therapy
organization serving Orleans, Jefferson and St.
For the past 20 years, the volunteers of the
lived up to their motto of "Bringing Love and
Smiles" to the residents of nursing homes and
Our literacy project, Reading
offers young readers the opportunity to practice
their reading aloud skills to the gentle therapy
If you would like to make a donation to
the Visiting Pet Program, please click on the
below or mail your check to 5831 S. Johnson
New Orleans, LA 70125. Please note if your
is in memory of a person or a pet. We will be
to send an acknowledgment of your donation to the
family. Please include the name and address
the acknowledgment. Because we are a 501(C)(3)
organization, your donation is tax deductible. We
are an all volunteer organization. Your donation
goes directly to the support of our mission.
22 SUCCESSFUL YEARS
VPP Volunteer Appreciation
your calendar now
and plan to bring the whole family
to the VPP
Sunday, March 22nd
Saturday, June 20, 2009 10am-12noon
Sunday, July 19, 2009
Harahan Senior Center
to register at
Reading To Rover
On the East Bank
Held on the third Tuesday of each
at the East Bank Regional Library
4747 W. Napoleon in Metairie
On the West Bank
Held on the second Sunday of each month
2751 Manhattan Blvd., Harvey
Events are now being planned in conjuction
STAIR program. Please contact Fay for
times and locations
Contact Fay Schultz
to confirm your slot at any of these
to Carrie Neyland
her beloved Golden
Brinkley had been a visiting pet since
2003, and was a regular visitor at Magnolia
Brinkley will be deeply missed by all who
Our deepest sympathies to Carrie on the loss
Nina and Al Bourgeois
retirement of their 12 year old Maltese,
Gateau in January.
Gateau had been
a visiting pet since December, 1999, and was a
regular visitor at Malta Park. Nina and Al
VPP volunteers since December, 1996. They have
recently moved to Lafayette.
to these dedicated volunteers
and their amazing pet
years of service.
you in your new home. We'll
Four Paws Salute
To VPP member
After many years of devoted service, Rebecca
has decided to step down from the Board of
Directors as our Orientation/Evaluation
Coordinator. Rebecca has had the
responsibilities of putting together the
Orientations, Evaluations and Workshops for
the last 5 years. With her incredible animal
knowledge, wit, and amazing teaching skills,
Rebecca has single-handedly trained tons of
our volunteers and raised the level of
professionalism in our organization.
Fortunately, Rebecca will continue her
membership, serving as a Buddy and continuing
to teach at the Orientations, Evaluations and
Workshops. We are so thankful for her
continued participation, but will greatly miss
her involvement with the Board of Directors.
Rebecca, it's hard to say thank you for all
given the organization that means so much to
so many, but,
thank you for a job really well