April 5, 2018
In the News: Eloise Carr talks about research study on how dogs can help patients living with chronic pain
New research at the University of Calgary is looking at how living with a dog may help patients with chronic pain. The feasibility study is called "Evaluating the benefits of dog ownership for people with chronic low back pain."
Following a small study interviewing people with chronic pain who lived with a dog, this study measured different aspects of health and wellness using postal surveys of people suffering from chronic pain in Alberta.
“There’s a lot of good science that’s published out there about the benefits of dog therapy or service dogs or about living with a dog, but not in the chronic pain population,” said Eloise Carr, Human-Animal Pain Interaction (HAPI) research team lead with the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Nursing.
Eighteen months of research led to this feasibility study that revealed dogs give people a reason to get out of the house and socialize. In addition, the surveys suggest the animals can help with the depression often associated with chronic pain.
The core team of 15 researchers have five patients and two service dogs. The team is comprised of researchers from the University of Calgary, University of Alberta and University of Lethbridge. At UCalgary, they come from the faculties of nursing, social work, veterinary medicine and the departments of sociology and community health sciences. There are plans to expand the study outside the province this year.
Carr is a member of the O’Brien Institute of Public Health at the Cumming School of Medicine, and has an adjunct position with the Department of Community Health Sciences.
Jean Wallace, professor in the Department of Sociology, Faculty of Arts is a co-principal investigator on this study. The team also have a mirrored study with Colorado State University colleagues, Peter Hellyer and Lori Kogan, who interviewed owners of dogs with chronic pain.
For the full article and video that aired on Global News on April 2, 2018, click here: