Honeycrisp Arrives at Memorial Regional Hospital

January 27, 2023

pet therapy dog honeycrisp at memorial regional hospital

Memorial Healthcare System introduces its newest animal assisted therapy dog, Honeycrisp. The 2.5-year-old Golden Retriever is certified to help treat physical and emotional disabilities. She comes from a long line of service and facility dogs: she is the niece of Freedom, Joe DiMaggio Children's Hospital’s therapy dog, and the great-great niece of Gael, Memorial Regional Hospital’s dog who is semi-retiring at age nine.

Honeycrisp has a gentle and calm demeanor that will pair perfectly with the fast-paced environment of Memorial Regional Hospital, home to Memorial Cardiac and Vascular Institute, Memorial Transplant Institute, Memorial Cancer Institute, Memorial Neuroscience Institute, Memorial Family Birthplace, and Level I Trauma Center.

“We are so excited to welcome Honeycrisp as she is part of our succession planning for Gael, who will be 10 years old this year and is semi-retiring,” said Tracy Meltzer, ARNP, director of nursing at Memorial Regional Hospital. “Through the help our specially trained therapy dogs, we’ve created a powerful healing environment that motivates and encourages our patients to reach their goals.”

Honeycrisp was onsite today with Memorial’s five other therapy pups and her home handler Trish for a training session. Her arrival from Educated Canines Assisting with Disabilities (ECAD) was made possible by a generous anonymous donation to the Memorial Foundation. Today the pups and their handlers worked on walking up and down stairs, riding an elevator, and simulated patient visits. The week-long training prepares the handlers and Honeycrisp to work with patients safely to provide comfort and care.