October 19, 2023

Meet ‘Maggie,’ the Service Dog Who Comforts Staff at Jefferson

PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania (WPVI) — “Everybody around our Jefferson campus knows Maggie,” said Dr. Marie Ann Marino.

Maggie is a 4-year-old Labrador Retriever with a special job.

Marino, the Dean of Thomas Jefferson University College of Nursing, is Maggie’s best friend. She brings her to work in order to provide comfort to not only patients, but hospital staff especially.

“Nurses are challenged today and they have a really important job. Not only are they caring for patients, they’re making sure that their outcomes are of high quality,” said Marino. “They need that engagement. We need to focus on their well-being.”

That’s where Maggie comes in.

“Nurses internalize a lot of stuff,” said Carmen A. Davis, nursing manager on B4 at Jefferson Methodist Hospital. “But with Maggie, she actually can feel the internalization and bring out external, good, happy feelings.”

Maggie was trained by an organization called Leashes of Valor, which provides service dogs to veterans at no cost. This is an important cause for Dr. Marino, who was once a reservist with the United States Navy. Read the story and watch the video.