Mayo Clinic has come up with its first children's book featuring "Dr. Jack," a 9-year-old miniature pinscher who is Mayo's first facility-based service dog.
Escorted by his owner, Mayo employee Marcia Fritzmeier, Jack is part of the health care team that helps patients with physical activity, rehabilitation, and speech therapy.
Mayo physicians place an order in a patient's medical record when requesting a visit by Dr. Jack, who sees approximately eight to 10 patients per day.
The book's author Matt Dacy, of Mayo's Department of Development, said: "In looking for ways to convey the Mayo Clinic model of care, we found a truly remarkable ambassador for Mayo: a little dog named Jack, who actually is a member of the Mayo team. This book is the story of Mayo as told through the experience of Jack in a way that children can understand and adults and readers of all ages can appreciate."
Brent Bauer, M.D., Mayo Clinic Department of Complementary and Integrative Medicine, said: "Why do we offer animal-assisted therapy to Mayo Clinic patients? Because it works!
"Of course, almost every patient 'feels' better after a visit by a dog like Jack. But scientific studies have shown this type of therapy can reduce pain in children, improve outcomes in adults hospitalized with heart failure, and reduce medication use in elderly patients."
In the book, Dr. Jack wears an identification tag with the Mayo Clinic three shields -- which stand for clinical practice, education and research. When a young boy at Mayo Clinic meets Dr. Jack, he rubs his tag and the two go on an amazing tour of Mayo Clinic, including a helicopter ride on Mayo One.
The book includes a biography of Jack by Jenee Marchant and a medical essay on the "Healing Dimension of Pets" by Edward Creagan, M.D., of Mayo's Department of Oncology. Mayo Trustee and former first lady Barbara Bush wrote the book's foreword and John Noseworthy, M.D., Mayo Clinic president and CEO, provided the welcome.
The book is available for purchase at Mayo Clinic-affiliated retail outlets on each Mayo campus. The proceeds will support patient care, education and research at Mayo.