Therapy dog helps hospital visitors endure wait



Salmon Creek — Peter Christensen and his miniature schnauzer, Mukaluka Dirtypaws, have been making weekly visits to Legacy Salmon Creek Medical Center since October 2010. As a therapy dog team, they bring comfort to patients and family alike.

Christensen and “Muka” enjoy putting on a show that’s nothing short of a circus act, entertaining in the hospital’s waiting rooms where families often have long waits. Muka makes a wonderful distraction whether he’s walking on his front paws, saying his prayers, or packing his suitcase and jumping in himself for the finale.

The pair are registered with Delta Society, a nonprofit supporting therapy animal teams. Delta Society’s Pet Partners program trains and screens volunteers with their pets so they can visit clients in hospitals, nursing homes, schools and other facilities.

You can see Muka’s tricks at