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San Luis Obispo County Airport announces launch of new SBPaws therapy dog program Monday

SLO County Airport

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. – The SLO County Airport (SBP) announced the launch of its new therapy dog program "SBPaws" Monday set to run for three months.

Below is a press release on the new program in partnership with the Alliance of Therapy Dogs:

SAN LUIS OBISPO, CA — The SLO County Airport (SBP) is excited to announce the launch of a new therapy dog program, 'SBPaws,' in partnership with the Alliance for Therapy Dogs. The pilot program will kick-off on Monday, June 3, 2024, and will run for a three-month pilot period. At the end of this period, the program will be evaluated to determine its future continuation. Passengers can expect to see therapy dogs inside the terminal from the hours of 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Monday and Thursday within that three-month period.

The SBPaws program aims to enhance the travel experience for passengers by providing comfort and reducing stress through interactions with certified therapy dogs. Travelers will have the opportunity to engage with these friendly, well-trained dogs in the airport terminal, offering a moment of relaxation and joy during their journey.

Benefits of airport therapy dog programs:

- Reduced Stress and Anxiety: Interaction with therapy dogs has been proven to lower stress levels and anxiety, providing a calming effect for travelers who may be nervous about flying. Overall, create a more positive travel experience.

- Enhanced Passenger Experience: Therapy dog programs contribute to a more pleasant and welcoming atmosphere in the airport, leading to increased passenger satisfaction.

- Support for Airport Staff: Airport employees can also benefit from interacting with therapy dogs, providing them with a moment of relaxation and a mental health boost.

- Community Engagement: The program fosters a sense of community and care, demonstrating the airport’s commitment to the well-being of its passengers and staff.

"We are thrilled to introduce the SBPaws program to our airport," said Courtney Johnson, Director of Airports. "Traveling can be a stressful experience, and we hope that the presence of therapy dogs will bring comfort and smiles to our passengers. We are committed to creating a positive and welcoming environment, and we believe SBPaws will be a wonderful addition to the airport experience."

The therapy dogs and their handlers will be easily identifiable, roaming the terminal to greet and interact with passengers. The Alliance for Therapy Dogs, a national organization dedicated to providing testing, certification, registration, support, and insurance for members, has trained and certified the dogs participating in the SBPaws program.

SBP invites all passengers to take a moment to enjoy the companionship of the SBPaws therapy dogs. Feedback from the program will be collected via the passenger surveys to assess its impact and effectiveness, which will guide the decision on whether to make the program a permanent feature at the airport.


The SLO County Airport (SBP) is a vital transportation gateway serving California’s Central Coast region. With its modern facilities and convenient location, the airport offers a range of domestic flights, connecting passengers to major cities across the United States. SBP serves areas as far north as Southern Monterey County, San Luis Obispo County, and as far south as Northern Santa Barbara County. SBP is committed to providing safe, efficient, and customer-focused air travel services to its passengers while supporting the economic growth and development of the region. SBP is also home to full-service general aviation and corporate facilities. For more information, please visit

SLO County Airport
Article Topic Follows: San Luis Obispo County
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