On October 1, 2015, Airport Foundation MSP brought registered dogs to the MSP terminals to make passenger travel more enjoyable. A therapy dog is a specially trained animal that partners with its human handler to volunteer at a variety of facilities and events, bringing joy, comfort, and companionship to those they meet. The dogs and their handlers participate in casual “meet and greet” activities that involve pets visiting people.
For people who like dogs and are not extremely allergic, these animals have a proven calming effect. Just as people soften with the smile of a stranger, dogs can lighten a heavy mood. Research shows that positive interactions with animals increase endorphins, oxytocin, prolactin and dopamine, the hormones associated with blood pressure regulation, pain relief, stress relief and joy.
To volunteer at the airport, the dogs and handlers must pass an evaluation with either Pet Partners or Alliance of Therapy Dogs.
Registered therapy dog teams with either of these organizations who wish to volunteer as a MSP Animal Ambassador may contact Travelers Assistance through this online form. We are unable to accept teams from any other organizations at this time.