RTE news interview regarding our Free Service Dog for Hospices and Special Schools.
We offer a free therapy service to all Schools, Hospices and Care Homes that would like us to visit.
Through their own zest for life, dogs help people maintain a positive. A positive attitude is key to good health, happiness, and staying young.
Dr. Michael McCulloch, a Portland, Oregon, psychiatrist, and Dr. Samuel Corson, of Ohio State University, are two active researchers and experts on why pets excel as therapeutic agents. The primary reasons McCulloch and Corson cite are an individual’s “need to be needed,” and “to touch and be touched.” Further, Dr. McCulloch states, “Touch is one of our primary needs when we’re born and one of our last needs to go.” In long-term facilities, residents are often sorely lacking the feeling that they are needed. Pets allow them, even if for a short time, to be nurturers once again.
Also, in a very real physical sense, residents can stroke their warm, furry visitors,
facilitating social behavior and encouraging physical movement.
Dogs love almost everyone without prejudice and they eliminate the language barrier. One nurse made this comment about a resident after a visit with a Therapy Dog, “She is the calmest I have seen her today. The dogs have tremendously reduced her high anxiety level.” Dogs, because of their social natures, often genuinely like people and choose to be around them in addition to their owners/handlers. Often, they are aware of illness and sadness and WANT to provide companionship and comfort; they are both intuitive and compassionate. It is always a joy to see
them detect sorrow and watch them lick tears away.
Dogs are an antidote to depression – and an easy pill to take. Life in a long-term care facility can be lonely and boring. A visit from a Therapy Dog can break the daily routine and stimulate the mind in dramatic ways. The most serious problem for older adults is not of disease; it’s loneliness.
Therapy Dogs and their handlers can make a resident come alive, ultimately, inviting residents back to the world outside the facility in which they live.
In my opinion, older people benefit from pets by:
• Bringing joy and laughter to daily life, which
in later years is often uneventful
• Giving the person something to do, talk about
and think about, other than him or herself
• Providing a source of touch and affiliation
• Heightening self-confidence, esteem, and a
sense of achievement
• Increasing communication between elderly
residents and neighbors
• Helping newcomers meet new friends
• Boosting overall morale
• Stimulating exercise and activity
• Helping people cope with illness, loss, and
• Lowering stress levels
• Encouraging communication
• Reminding them of their own pets
If you would like to arrange for us to visit please call us anytime on 042 9374532