Imagine a form of
therapy that could be used by anyone with a variety of
mental, physical, or emotional disabilities. It’s
not a drug and it has no side effects.
It’s always there for you whenever you need it.
In fact it lives with you. It could be scaly,
feathered or furry. We’re talking about pet
therapy, or, as it’s sometimes referred to,
“pet-facilitated therapy” or “animal-assisted therapy.”
The most commonly used pets for pet therapy are dogs,
cats, horses, fish, birds and rabbits.
Why are pets
Pets are alive.
Being able to hold a pet or take care of another
living creature provides much comfort. It can
take the focus away from the illness or disability
for a few moments.
criticize or judge and they give love
unconditionally. They accept for who we are no
matter what we do. They are very intuitive and
can pick up on your emotions, and respond in an
trusting. We can learn trust from them and
build trust in ourselves and others.
Pets listen well
no matter what you have to say. They don’t
interrupt or force their opinions on you.
Pets make us
feel important and needed. Whether your day is
good or bad, your pet can be the bright spot in your
day. Their dependence on us for food,
grooming, water and exercise makes us feel needed.
Pets can be very
funny without even trying. They say that
laughter is the best medicine. They make us
talk “baby talk” and act sillier than we would
normally. They like to play and enjoy it even
more when we join in.
It may be too much
for the caregiver to take on the responsibility of a pet
along with everything else, but you should consider it.
Not only might it be beneficial to your loved
one, you may find that it’s good therapy and stress
relief for you, too. Consider adopting a pet from
your local Humane Society. You’ll feel even better
for giving a needy pet a good home.
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