Jillian Zielinski of JZ Creative and Luna, a St John’s Ambulance Therapy Dog.

Therapy dogs make appearance at B.C. Games

The St. John Ambulance program launches a pilot project at the Kamloops event

For the first time ever at the B.C. Winter Games, dogs will be part of the action.

The Kamloops St. John Ambulance therapy dog program was asked by the Winter Games committee to help with the health and wellbeing of the athletes during the weekend event.

RELATED: What you need to know today at the B.C. Games

The four-legged friends are set to visit most of the events, for athletes to hangout wih during their downtime.

Adrienne Ganton is one of the dog handlers and explained that as many of the athletes are young, away from home for the first time and taking part in highly competitive events, the dogs are available to offer support and a calm environment.

“There is scientific evidence that petting an animal, especially dogs, can lower your heart rate, lower your anxiety level, lower your blood pressure and give you a good feeling all around,” she said.

Several of the pooches appeared at the opening ceremonies Thursday night, and the wagging tails were a huge hit with both athletes and spectators.

RELATED: B.C. Winter Games opens with an Olympic touch

The dogs won’t be at every event, but athletes can catch the 30 volunteers and their pups at the Sandman Centre, the Tournament Capital Centre and some of the dorms.

If the pilot project goes well, athletes can expect to see their four-legged friends at future B.C. Games events.

“It would be great to get more therapy dogs involved from around the province, so we are hoping this goes well,” said Ganton.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Ministry correspondence, deleted agenda items highlight continued UBID dysfunction

More conflict has surfaced between members of Union Bay’s local governing authority.… Continue reading

Comox Valley United escapes relegation for second season in a row

The Reds will continue playing in Vancouver Island’s top soccer league

WATCH: Students petition Courtenay council for sidewalk

The Arden Ambassador Team appeared before Courtenay council Monday

Rescued Comox canoer credits those ‘at the right place, at the right time’

James Milne was rescued in a hypothermic state Sunday near Goose Spit

Comox Valley stroke recovery organization creates new support group for survivors, caregivers

Program coordinator Mackenzie Scharf says awareness of local resources is lacking

Royston Elementary School hosts first ever science expo

“We have lots of hands-on science experiments that the students are doing,” says school principal

Showers, flurries and hail all possible over South Coast on Thursday and Friday

Thunderstorms producing small hail could also be on the weather menu

B.C. Scientists witness first-ever documented killer whale infanticide

“It’s horrifying and fascinating at the same time.”

Charges formally laid against Nanaimo city manager

City of Nanaimo CAO Tracy Renee Samra charged with fear of injury/damage by another person

Okanagan Falls winery showing international photo project

Liquidity Wines will be sole Canadian show of National Geographic’s Photo Ark

Courtenay cheesemaker isn’t ‘grated’ by French concerns

Natural Pastures takes home bronze medal in world cheese championship

Lawyer for one suspect in beating of man with autism says he’s not guilty

Ronjot Singh Dhami will turn himself in, lawyer said

Liberals awarded $100,000 contract to man at centre of Facebook data controversy

Christopher Wylie says his voter-profiling company collected private information from 50 million Facebook users

Facebook’s Zuckerberg admits mistakes in privacy scandal

Zuckerberg admits to privacy scandal involving a Trump-connected data-mining firm, but no apology

Most Read