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Pet Therapy for Children With Disabilities
Pet Therapy Helps Children in Many Ways
The Benefits of Pet Assisted Therapy
Dogs and kids are a natural. So natural that children with disabilities, whether they are physical or mentally disabled, have shown tremendous benefits when they interact with dogs.
Children with disabilities gain more confidence and have shown greater motivation to take on new things. Dogs have an amazing instinct in dealing with people. They can sense that a child with disabilities may need more patiences.
When dogs assist children who have physical limitations, they can help them perform tasks that assist the child. Companion dogs are specially trained dogs that can open doors, pick up items that have been dropped, and help in activities of daily living.
Dogs stimulate these children and can even offer a form of physical therapy by encouraging them to move, exercise and stretch to interact with their canine friend.
Pets Provide a Unique Support System
Pets help children with their mobility. They help promote exercise and stretching, almost like a form of physical therapy. Even something ordinary, like a child throwing a pet’s toy can help improve hand eye coordination.
Emotionally, a dog becomes a life long friend to a child with disabilities and helps them form emotional bonds and companionship. Children feel a sense of being loved and cared for by a dog. Their self esteem increases as they struggle and gives them a feeling that they are not alone.
A disabled child, learns how to interact with others because they interact with their pet. Dogs reduce stress and open up opportunities for them to meet other people. All these things help people heal and feel better.
Pets provide a unique support system for children with disabilities. They help motivate, inspire and offer emotional support through their loyalty and companionship. The benefits to children are great. Their self esteem and confidence rises.
They learn to care of another living being, and have a constant companion. The presence of an animal has shown to increase pleasure and productivity.
Horse Assisted Therapy
Dolphins are wonderful for therapy
Horse and Dolphin Assisted Therapy
Some programs use dogs, horses and dolphins. These animals provde benefits through physical therapy, confidence, and motivation, and improve therapeutic outcomes.
Riding horses has been shown to be especially beneficial for children with a variety of disabilities. Children with Down’s Syndrome, and autism, as an example gain greatly physically, emotionally, and intellectually. Riding improves muscle tone, coordination, balance, emotional well being, and motor skill development. The organizations that use horses as therapy for kids, us different kinds of horses for different purposes.
- Miniature horses are brought to hospitals and schools
- Draft horses can pull wagons that are full of children.
Horses have been shown to be effective for children who can’t walk on their own. Their muscles get toned, their posture improves, and the rocking motion of the horse, mimics the pelvci motion of walking. Some children become so improved, they are able to learn to walk with a walker. Just by improving their posture, the children sit better in a wheelchair. They found there is a difference in public perception, how they are treated, and how they interact with others, between someone who sits hunched over with their eyes looking to the ground, compared to children who sit up better and have direct eye contact.
Dolphin Human Therapy, an assited rehabilitation program in Miami, Florida, uses dolphins to help children and adults with special needs.
Dog Assisted Therapy
Programs with service dogs are very effective, especially since service dogs can live with the child and help with many of their activities of daily living. Children who have muscular dystrophy, cerebral palsy, disabling injuries, and other reason, service dogs help these children in remarkable ways.
Service dogs can learn to turn lights on with their noses, and turn the lights off with their teeth. They can open doors that have been adapted for the service dog, they can pick up things that fall on the floor. The dogs help children gain confidence and independence. They get the children out of the house and functioning in ways they could not on their own.
Dogs also help relieve human caretakers in some ways. Service dogs are free for qualified children with disabilities. There are not enough dogs for the people who need the. The actual cost of training, veterinary care, feeding, etc, the dog, is nearly $20,000, and these companies rely on fundraising to help these children in need.
The Many Benefits of Animal Assisted Therapy
If you would like to make a donation, to help keep make these programs to more children, you can look up the various programs throughout the country, that interest you.
The importance of pets to children, provide unconditional love, warmth and affection. They give a new perspective, motivation, amusement, and companionship that help children in ways that provide psychological, physical, and emotional benefits.