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Therapy Dogs

"Our Personal Little Bond With Nature"

   There is, as of yet, an amazing untapped resource at our fingertips. Science is only now beginning to fully appreciate the miraculous healthy connection between people and their pets. 

   While animals have been used to ease and soothe the sick since the ninth century, it is only in the last 20 years that the medical community has started to incorporate encounters with them as treatment plans.

   Pets and kids, like bread and butter, they are a natural combination. The power of the healing touch from hugging a gentle Therapy Dog and feeling unconditional acceptance is a love that can mend a broken heart or quiet a troubled soul. During a divorce or following a death, highly stressed children may act out and need someone to listen. A warm furry friend can comfort a child when the world is crumbling down around them. When you look straight into the eyes of a Therapy Dog their sweet gaze twinkling with hope and affection warms your heart instantly. They speak the language of the soul. 

   Simple weekly visits from Therapy Dogs have had remarkable success in bringing autistic children back to reality. When children with ADD are caring for an animal, it acquaints them with respect, self-control, and responsibility. Animals reach them in ways that traditional medications and humans cannot. As a result of their involvement with these animals, they become more responsible and attentive citizens of the world. These children become more aware of the needs of others and more responsible for their own behavior. 

   Therapy Dogs or Service Dogs have been taught to detect the onset of diabetic comas, epileptic seizures, and even some cancers. Those that have an animal in their homes or have access to Therapy Dogs have an eight times greater chance of surviving one year after a heart attack. Those with pets have fewer doctor visits, shorter hospital stays, and an easier time adapting to recuperation time.

   The connection is undeniable. All animals, but in particular Therapy Dogs give the elderly, the stressed, and the emotionally disengaged the strength and motivation to reclaim their health. Therapy Dogs lessen stress by lowering the heart rate, blood pressure, and even cholesterol. The healing touch of petting a Therapy Dog and being kissed or nuzzled in return establishes a soothing intimacy at a time of loneliness. 

   I believe that when people have the right pets for their needs the world would be a much happier and healthier place. This is a bond worth exploring, celebrating, protecting, and expanding. This is without a doubt the best deal humankind has ever made. This vital link fuels our spirit supplies passion to the world and makes us laugh. 

   We truly have no idea of the potential healing power of the four-legged members of our family. If this powerful medicine were to be explored, as in a double-blind study, it would certainly result in the discovery of a miracle drug indeed! 

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