Published: Jan 17, 2012 4:55 PM EST

PASCAGOULA, Miss. (AP) - A south Mississippi hospital has launched a program that provides animal-assisted therapy.
    
The Mississippi Press reports that (http://bit.ly/yYzCaI ) Singing River Hospital in Pascagoula calls its program Pet Assisted Wellness Services, or PAWS for short. The stars of this show are Vossie, a 2-year-old golden retriever handled by Traci James of Ocean Springs. A 20-month-old bulldog, Tiger Babe, is handled by James Segroves of Ocean Springs.
    
The program is being tried out in the Comprehensive Rehabilitation Center.
    
Registered nurse Cindy Carrigan, the center's patient care manager, says a low-level stroke patient who was depressed and not able to manage one side very well, brushed and petted Vossie. She says patients look forward to seeing the dogs.
    
___
    
Information from: The Mississippi Press, http://www.gulflive.com

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)