Imagine sitting in an airport, ready to board a plane to your next locum tenens assignment in a new city. You may be a little nervous or anxious of the unknown that awaits, or you may just be bored and looking for a way to kill time. Well, the next time you’re waiting to catch a flight, you may be able to look towards a furry friend to help pass the time.
Big, puppy-dog eyes, an incessantly wagging tail, and a friendly nudge from a cool, wet nose have a certain comforting way about them, and it is exactly this idea that a Charlotte airport, and several others, have modeled after when implementing their new CLT Canine Crew Program.
At no cost to the facility, Charlotte Douglas International Airport is now the 28th airport in the United States to have such a program, which features certified therapy dogs and their handlers sporting designated “Pet Me” vests, encouraging passengers to stop and pet the dogs as they pass by.
Results from a study conducted at the University of Missouri – Columbia show that just a few minutes of petting a pet dog prompts a release of a number of “feel good” hormones in humans, including serotonin, prolactin, and oxytocin.
Other airports that are participating in this and similar programs include the Los Angeles International Airport, Miami International Airport, San Antonio International Airport, Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids, Will Rogers World Airport in Oklahoma City, San Diego International Airport, San Francisco International Airport, and the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston.
So, the next time you are waiting to catch a flight to your next locum tenens assignment, take a look around; you may just be in the company of man’s best friend! To learn more about the CLT Canine Crew Program, click here.