SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - Scripps Health is saying thank you to the therapy dogs and handlers who are improving the lives of patients on a daily basis.

The hospital hosted a Blessing of the Pets Holiday Party in La Jolla Friday.

Bentley the dog regularly stops by Scripps Chula Vista, and his handler says she can see right away how patients benefit from his visits.

"It's very calming. Many of them miss their own pets and so it's nice to be able to share my dog with them. And a lot of them ask for pictures with him. It's just something different in their hospital day. It makes the day a little brighter," handler Barbara Pichardo said.

More than 60 certified therapy dogs visit Scripps Health patients throughout the year.