The animal lovers do not need scientific data to know that a pet can bring joy and comfort to their lives. However, many veterinarians have carried out research and compiled to support and validate the value of animals in physical and psychological therapy. Standards have been established for both assisted therapy animals and animal-assisted activities. Today, a growing number of treatment programs include different animals, from birds to horses, with great success.
Animal Assisted Therapy
When a physical therapist or mental health uses animal-assisted therapy or zootherapy, improve patient care, attention and motivation. The animal-assisted therapy includes a treatment plan in writing, explaining the specific objectives, time and duration of therapy. The therapist documenting the progress of the patient in detail, considering how animal-assisted in the patient progress. For example, a patient who is recovering from a stroke, or another injury may be more inspired to walk if you can walk with a dog during exercises. The animals involved in the therapy should be kind to people and must pass a health examination.
Although animal-assisted activities often produce therapeutic results, patients interact with animals in a more informal manner as in animal-assisted therapy. A trained volunteer or auxiliary may supervise the visit, and take notes or write treatment plans. Instead of working with a patient at a time, the animals visit a group. For example, if a volunteer brings a rabbit or potbellied pig to visit a nursing home or orphanage, the residents spend time interacting with each other and petting the animals, this is an animal-assisted activity.
The presence of an animal in therapy may motivate a patient at any age. As a result, animal-assisted therapy produces a measurable physical progress in patients, as they will be more willing to participate in the exercises. According to the Delta Society, some of the physical benefits include improved motor skills both fine and coarse. For example, brushing a dog improves fine motor skills, and walking a dog improves gross motor skills. In addition, the patient usually experiences physiological, such as lower blood pressure and heart rate changes, and recover more quickly after surgery or illness.
A therapy animal has a soothing effect in patients due to the acceptance of the nature of the animal. When a patient relaxes, opens and relates more to the therapist and those around him in a group situation. These animals tend to bring out the nurturing instincts of a person. When a patient is involved in animal care, such as feeding a carrot to a rabbit, it promotes self-esteem and self-efficacy. Patients may also improve cognitive and verbal skills. For example, if a child is asked to icicle an animal, the therapist may ask you to explain how to complete the task.