Hospitalized kids, their pets will visit

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They’ll reunite at new facility in Cincinnati

CINCINNATI — A southwestern Ohio hospital soon will be welcoming the furry, four-legged friends of children who face long hospital stays.

Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center broke ground last week on a Family Pet Center. Hospital officials said they think the center will be the country’s first hospital-based facility to reunite kids and their pets.

The center will be open to children battling cancer and others with other serious medical conditions.

John Perentesis, executive co-director of the hospital’s Cancer and Blood Diseases Institute, said pets can be “very therapeutic” to patients.

He said the pets will bring joy, comfort and a positive mindset to ailing children.

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