Simon the ‘show-stealer’: Therapy dog comforts patients at Molar Bear Pediatric Dentistry | Local News Stories
WASILLA – Simon, the service dog, steals the spotlight at Molar Bear Pediatric Dentistry, providing a reassuring and memorable experience for young patients every week.
“It was good for a lot of anxious kids to have him sitting there next to them,” said Chris Rosenvall, owner of Molar Bear Pediatric Dentistry. “It can be scary for a lot of kids … We’re trying to make it different. For them … We’re just always looking for ways to make it easier for kids to go to the dentist.”
Molar Bear has received many positive online reviews since Simon’s arrival. Rosenvall said most of them were about Simon, and they love to see kids light up when they see Simon.
“We’ve had an overwhelmingly positive response. Everyone wants to meet him. He’s been a bit of the show-stealer,” said Rosenvall with a laugh.
Simon is a 3-year-old poodle who started his dog job in late February. Rosenvall said they could fly him here after travel restrictions were relaxed.
Simon quietly leads children to a relaxing sensory room with a sofa and TV. He sits with patients while they receive their dental care.
“He’s probably just the sweetest, nicest dog … He just wants to be loved. He is a very calm dog, very patient. He’s been great, ”said Rosenvall.
Molar Bear offers specialized care with a strong emphasis on supporting local children with special needs or disabilities. He noted that when it comes time to clock out, Simon comes home with him, where he has been a huge help to his son with ADHD.
“We’ve seen quite a few kids with autism, or ADHD, or other special needs, and Simon has been great at that. They’ve been much calmer and more comfortable with him, ”said Rosenvall.
Simon is trained to work with children of all ages. Rosenvall said having a therapy dog on site has been a huge help in their overall mission of helping local families with a wide variety of unique needs.
“We do everything we can for the children and their parents… We try to make it more personal when you come here. It’s one family at a time, and I think there are a lot of people who appreciate that, ”said Rosenvall.
Molar Bear’s pediatric dentistry takes place at Wasilla City Center at 609 S. Knik-Goose Bay Rd. For more information, call 907-376-6527 or visit akmolarbear.com.