Meet Collin: Space City Pain’s therapy dog!

Our patients at Space City Pain Specialists are often pleasantly surprised when they see our canine friend, Collin, the therapy dog, playfully walking down the hallways of our office. He is a healthy, beautiful Golden Retriever who loves to help our patients with his friendly, loving nature.

The minute Collin walks into an examine room to visit with his multiple patient fans, they are comforted to see him again. It appears that their pain levels plummet immediately! Why is this? Is there a physiologic explanation as to why humans feel better around a dog? Oxytocin, serotonin, dopamine, or the “feel-good chemicals” are released by the human brain when you pet a dog. These substances can improve your mood and decrease painful symptoms. The medical term for them is “neurotransmitters,” and they are often at low levels in people who suffer from depression and pain.

Dogs also induce the nervous system to produce endorphins, which are your body’s natural pain relievers.

So, having Collin next to you can help heal your aches! Collin is one of the best prescriptions I can give a patient to treat chronic pain. Dr. Alvarez says, pet your dog three times a day! Whoof!