VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) – Therapy dogs are changing the lives of many people including those with autism, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), and anxiety.

Children with special needs often benefit from interacting with therapy dogs which are trained to detect anxiousness and discomfort, two things that can arise during something as simple as a trip to the dentist.

Enter Opie, a therapy dog who is helping children who visit one dental office in Hampton Roads.

Nurse anesthetist Caren Cajares has found that having Opie there for check-ups and procedures means she doesn’t need as much medication to ease children with special needs into the anesthetic process.

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