Animal Assisted Therapy – OT and PT Pups, got started through a happy accident.
My three dogs and I were leaving my Mum’s Assisted Living apartment. We went by the “Preservation Station” where the OT and PT were working with clients. We were invited in. The pups made people smile, laugh, sit up, pay attention, and forget their pain and worries. People were breathing deeper from their diaphragm. We were asked to come back and work with specific individuals, to assist in their rehabilitation.
The OT said, “Hey can your dogs fetch a ball?” I said sure I’ve got a blond dog that will fetch all day. We worked with more clients, with more specific purposes and interventions. We discovered that clients working with the dogs would often walk farther, do more repetitions, reach a little farther…all within a context of relaxation and joy. The therapists loved the dogs and they always had a ball when we helped them out.
Six years later we have helped 100’s of clients reach their therapists desired outcomes. We are often called in on “tough” cases. Clients and patients who are having a hard time seeing the benefits of therapy are distracted by the dogs and often end up participating. We have witnessed resistance and non-compliance simply melt away and be replaced with relaxation and enthusiasm.
Universities, colleges and professional organizations sponsor us to come and teach a one day workshop in Animal Assisted Therapy. From Nebraska to Maryland our course has been well received and has always been assigned 6 hours toward CEU’s. By 4:00 PM you have a Certificate of Endorsement in Animal Assisted – Occupational, Physical or Recreational, – Therapy. Download our brochure under “classes”
We have exhibited and lectured at the American Occupational Therapy Association National Conference and their Student Conclave. The class’ and the booth are extremely popular. We are humbled and grateful that so many are interested in this extraordinary modality.