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Animal lovers already know how good it feels to interact with their pet. Now research has shown that this positive effect can also be applied in a therapeutic setting. Leveraging the power of pets is becoming a vital tool in the treatment of a variety of medical conditions and disorders, particularly those associated with mental health.
What are the benefits of Pet Therapy?
Trained animals are used to benefit patients suffering with emotional and behavioral disorders, depression, autism, substance abuse, and dementia. Animals accept us as we are — they don’t judge and they don’t threaten — so patients can wholeheartedly interact with them safe in the knowledge that there is no hidden agenda.
Individuals with emotionally based disorders in particular may find it difficult to open up and trust another human being, but discover this process is much easier with a therapy animal. Frequently reported benefits from pet-therapy programs include a reduction in stress, a boost in self-esteem, improved mood, and better communication skills.