It has been proven that animals are always a great addition to a family. Many of them make kids happier by giving them a friend they can play with, but they are also great for adults since they usually ensure that everyone who is in the home stays active. Dogs have also become known for their ability to provide a service to their masters. There are police dogs who can sniff out bad things and take down bad people if need be. There are also service dogs that can sense when their owner is about to have a seizure or some other health issue. With all the good that animals provide, it should not be a surprise to anyone that they are also great healers. Therapy dogs and other animals are frequently used in hospitals to help the patients be a little happier and it is becoming even more popular with each passing year.
What Is Animal Therapy?
Animal therapy is a type of therapy for people that can improve a patient’s entire outlook. It can help them mentally, physically, socially, and emotionally. There are also different types of animals available to help people. It depends on what the person needs as to which type of animal may work the best for them, but dogs, horses, rabbits, llamas, and even dolphins can be used. There are also other types of animals. These animals can help a person with cancer, addictions, heart disease, dementia, emotional or behavioral disorders, autism, chronic pain, and more. The animals, depending on specific needs, may be able to help improve balance, increase focus, relieve grief and anxiety, or reduce blood pressure so that the patient can worry less about having a stroke or a heart attack.
Why Animal Therapy Works
Pet therapy takes advantage of the bond that is naturally available between pets and people. By interacting with a pet that is friendly, a person’s body will release endorphins which cause calmness. Even children can benefit from it by becoming more empathetic with other beings and learning to nurture them. Also, a pet, alongside a health care provider, can increase the patient’s willingness to go through the more uncomfortable parts of physical therapy.
Is Pet Therapy Right for You?
Pet therapy can be useful for virtually anyone, but it is especially beneficial for elderly patients who are in a long-term care facility and people who have been in a hospital for an extended period of time. Veterans who suffer from PTSD, children who are having certain procedures done, patients who need rehab after a stroke, and anyone with a form of mental health disorder. If a pet is near, most patients will want to get well enough that they can play with and spend time with the animals that are there. There may even be some patients who will communicate more with an animal than they are able to do with their actual physical therapist.
In short, pet therapy is ideal for anyone that loves animals. It is perfect for people of all ages and all health-related issues. They are best used by anyone who wants to smile through their next physical therapy session.