To all the dog lovers know that your emotional support dog serves many purposes in society today. Dogs have been known for support, emotional, and many other services.
I can’t count the number of times that I have gone into a retail store and see someone with an emotional support dog. I even saw a lady in the store that had her emotional support dogs in a baby stroller.
Therapy dogs can help people with loneliness. This is definitely a pet therapy benefit. A dog seemingly offers "unconditional love." Some dogs are just very social and they make good therapy dogs. A dog's temperament and behavior should be taken into consideration to be considered for dog therapy. There is something therapeutic about hugging or stroking a dog. That physical contact can be very soothing and pleasurable.
Therapy dogs are used in the hospital and nursing homes. According to the Mayo Clinic there are many suffering from anxiety and depression that are assisted in the hospital with animal therapy. They further add Children having dental procedures, cancer patients, people with cardiovascular disease and many more benefit from this program.
Dogs are used in many different capacities.
2. Dogs in the K9 Units
Did you know that the earliest K-9 training facility started in Ghent, Belgium in 1899 according to law enforcement museum.org.? They further add that a handler in Spotsylvania County (VA) Sheriff’s Department started training canine breeds including Labrador retrievers, German shepherds, Belgian malinois, and bloodhounds in 1976. As you can see they used a variety of dogs. Canine dogs have been very helpful to the Police Department and the community.
I recall not too long ago that the Police and canines were swarming my neighborhood looking for someone.
3. Dogs during wartime
According to stars and stripes.com dogs were trained to sniff out minefields during war in Afghanistan. They further add that dogs have a powerful sense of smell that allows dogs to detect the fumes of a mine. How awesome is that?
Therapy dogs do become part of the family. Many think of their dogs as part of their family. Dogs are sensitive and understand what you say to them. I recall visiting a family member. She needed to go to work that day, but her dog needed to go to the vet. She asked me to drive her dog to another relative not too far away and she would take the dog to the vet. She politely told the dog to follow her and get in the car. Her dog hopped into my car and sat in the front seat. He sat up looking out the window. In fact he sat up in the car the entire 20 minute ride.
Then there was the time my aunt was keeping her employer’s dog while he was out of town. My boyfriend came over as we sat on the couch this large French poodle came and squeezed in between us. He did not like my boyfriend and did not like him to sit directly besides me. This poodle was very territorial.
I definitely will not forget the time that I delivered my baby the same time that our German Shepherd had her litter. I did not realize it at the time but soon found out how territorial our dog was. She was very good with my other children they could pick up and pet her litter. No problems with her around my newborn. Visitors came over and as I proceeded to take them to see my newborn our dog would not allow them to go pass. She started growling. So I needed to put her in another closed door room. I realized she was protective over my newborn as well as her new litter. That was a learning lesson for me.
Did you know that dogs can smell cancer? Yes according to the National Foundation for Cancer Research canines smell up to 1,000 times more accurately than humans.
6. Walking your dog
You can walk your dog which is great exercise for both you and your dog. I recall when I had a Doberman she really loved to run and she could run very fast. I would take her to a secluded area where she could run. Now they have dog parks specifically for dogs. That is so nice.
So if you do not already have a dog and are thinking about getting a therapy dog you may think to yourself how do I quality? According to usservice animals.org. A therapy dog must be well-tempered, not shed excessively, social, and adapting. They further add that the process includes adopting, training, and registering.
8. Get My Dog Certified
How do you get your dog to be a certified Therapy Dog? According to the Therapydogs.com dogs must be well mannered and under control of their handler at all times, friendly, at least one year old, have a tester/observer test you and your dog, and after completion of tester/observer during 3 visits with residents of medical facilities you may submit your application or paperwork for you and your dog to become a Therapy Team.
9. College Campus
Before the Caronovirus Pandemic according to NBC25 news, the University of Michigan-Flint was allowing students to meet at the library campus and Student Veterans center to pet the therapy dogs. This is beneficial in helping with stress during final exams. This was just another way that therapy dogs were benefiting the community. Because this is not the first Pandemic that we have endured eventually in time we will become more creative in surviving and overcoming this invisible enemy Covid-19.
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