APPLETON, Wis. – Appleton International Airport, in partnership with Fox Valley Humane Association (FVHA), will resume its popular ATW Therapy Dogs program July 9, 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Staffed by FVHA, the program pairs experienced dog handlers with well-trained, friendly dogs who visit the airport and delight travelers on the airport’s main concourse.
Studies have shown that interacting with a friendly pet can help reduce anxiety, release calming endorphins, and improve overall health. “The Therapy Dog program is quite popular with our travelers, as it can help reduce stress before their flights, and we’re excited to have it back in action,” said Abe Weber, Appleton Airport director. “The presence of the FVHA therapy dogs is part of what makes Appleton Airport the most comfortable, traveler-friendly airport experience in Wisconsin.”
Airport therapy dogs have been a growing trend over the past several years, and airports across the country employ programs that ease travelers and bring smiles to faces. In 2019, FVHA therapy dog volunteers contributed 250 hours visiting passengers at the Appleton Airport.
“Our therapy dogs and their owners are looking forward to being back in the Appleton Airport terminal greeting passengers and offering support to travelers,” said Vicki Prey, FVHA executive director. “Partnering with Appleton Airport has been a great experience for our therapy dogs and their owners.”
In addition to visiting Appleton Airport travelers, FVHA is currently in the midst of a $100,000 matching grant campaign. To help efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic, community philanthropist Mary Beth Nienhaus is providing a $100,000 matching grant toward FVHA’s Make a Difference campaign. Donations will be matched up to $100,000. To donate, community members can visit www.foxvalleypets.org or in person at the shelter.