Pet therapy involves the unconditional love of a animal for a human being. Pets bring so much joy to our lives. Interacting with animals is good for our physical state of mind as well as our psychological state of mind. “Pet Therapy” or “Dog Therapy” are names given to describe programs in which animals help people by visiting them. A visit from an animal such as a dog, helps people feel less lonely, less depressed and provides a welcomed distraction from pain and infirmity.
Using your dog for pet therapy is a wonderful opportunity to bring joy and unconditional love to the elderly and physically infirmed. This is equally a rewarding experience for you. Where is Pet Therapy offered? Pet therapy is being used in nursing homes, rehabilitation centers, hospice care and other homes/ patient care to provide a source of positive interaction for recovering and terminally ill patients. What makes a good therapy dog? First – the dog must be social and exhibit a calm temperament. Dogs used in pet therapy must possess basic obedience skills. The dog must be trained to accept different types of petting and handling and be comfortable with people in wheel chairs, crutches and hospital beds.
How we train your dog for pet therapy? Possible scenarios are enacted out with the trainer to expose the dog to different situations. Appropriate responses are taught to the dog to prevent him from panicking when he faces a real situation. Dogs who do not know how to react will show either a fight or flight response. Your dog will learn to behave normally when he meets patients and accept the circumstances as normal. At the end of the training session, your dog will be tested for his responses and behavior in a real life situation. A certificate will be awarded to the dog qualifying him to be used for pet therapy.