Nepean Therapy Dogs

About Us

We bring trained therapy dogs to local hospitals, nursing homes and schools. Our therapy dogs help reduce anxiety, depression, stress and lighten up the mood with palliative care families. All visits are supervised by a highly trained dog handler. Each team (dog and handler) are assessed to find their strengths and weaknesses.  Depending on the results, teams are trained in specialised areas working with; children, disabled, young adults, elderly, palliative care and emergency services.  Each Nepean Therapy Dog handler is trained, capable and proficient in the environment they are visiting.


Our History

Founder Annmarie Schuster 2014

Founder Annmarie Schuster 2014

Nepean Therapy Dogs Inc. began in 1992 when Annemarie and Bella visited a friend in Nepean Hospital. What started out as a one-off experience quickly became a regular occurrence. Innovative doctors and nurses soon embraced the opportunity to enhance their treatments of patients through the positive effect that Bella had on so many people. As demand grew, it soon became clear that Bella and Annemarie needed more help…and we still do.

Many at Governer Phillip 2001

Mandy at Governor Phillip 2001

From those humble beginnings with Bella, we have grown and now have an amazing group of volunteers (both two legged and four), who visit Nepean, Katoomba, Blacktown, Mt Druitt, Westmead, Hawkesbury and Auburn Hospitals along with various Western Sydney Nursing Homes and schools on a regular basis.

The dogs are welcomed in most areas of the hospital, spreading much joy among patients, visitors and staff alike.




Our management team

Nicole Celeban

Michael Celeban
Vice President
Paula Smith
General Manager & Trainer


Carol_RixonCarol Rixon
Elizabeth Fenton
Timothy Smith


Nepean Therapy Dogs in the News:

“Modern health care is not just about science, technology, drugs and surgery… it is about people, it is about caring!”

Lady Darci’s Courtly Love

Penrith Press 18/05/2017

Therapy Dogs prove their mans best friends

Daily Edition 10/04/2017

Big Baron On Duty (no link)

Penrith Press Page 3. 30/3/2017

Meet Baron, Australia’s largest therapy dog

Dogs Today Magazine  28/03/2017

Why is Australia’s Biggest canine Baron lapping up his new job as a therapy dog

Daily Telegraph 27/03/2017

Nsw-First Pilot:dogs in court

The Daily Telegraph 15/1/2017

Therapy Dogs (Nepean Therapy Dog segment starts at 8 minutes 19 seconds)

ABC Australia Wide – 3/12/2016

Four-legged healing from Nepean Therapy Dogs (no link)

Nepean News page 18 – 8/09/2016

Nepean Therapy Dogs Dress to Impress for Halloween

Penrith City Gazette – 03/11/2016

Blacktown Mount Druitt Hospitals and Rotary Clubs donate hospital equipment for Nepean Therapy Dogs Training Room

St. Mary’s Star – 31/08/2016

Furry friend who visits the sick

Auburn Review – 14/06/16

Hospital, nursing home patients mourning the loss of Amber the therapy dog
Daily Telegraph – 19/1/2016

Vicious dog attack leaves Blacktown Hospital therapy dog Lulu wounded
Daily Telegraph – 11/11/2015

Nepean Therapy Dogs pay Mt Druitt Hospital patients a visit
Daily Telegraph – 17/6/2015

Nepean Therapy Dogs providing extra therapy for Sydney hospital patients
ABC News – 16/6/2015

Healing Helpers
Channel 9 Today show – 1/7/2015

Canines bring healing paws
Penrith City Gazette – 12/2/2012

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