What is Animal (Pet) Therapy?


Animal-assisted therapy is being used to help individuals with their, mental, physical, emotional needs. Different types of animals can be used based off the needs of each person. Some animals used in therapy include: horses, dogs, dolphins, llamas, rabbits, cats and so much more.

Animal therapy can happen in places such has: homes, prisons, hospitals, nursing homes and schools. Animal therapy can be use with one person or with many. A qualified trained therapist should always be used.


Benefits of Animals Therapy


  • Improved fine motor skills
  • Improved balance
  • Increased focus and attention
  • Increased self-esteem and ability to care for oneself
  • Reduced anxiety, grief and isolation
  • Reduced blood pressure, depression, and risk of heart attack or stroke
  • Increased trust and empathy
  • Improved self-control
  • Enhanced problem-solving skills
  • Reduced need for medications
  • Improved social skills
  • Because many children, teens and adults enjoy working with animals, animal-assisted therapy can be particularly beneficial for individuals who are resistant to treatment or have difficulty accessing their emotions or expressing themselves in talk therapy.


Who can benefits from Animal Therapy?


People with a variety of conditions can benefit from animal-assisted therapy, including:

  • People undergoing chemotherapy
  • Residents in long-term care facilities
  • People hospitalized with chronic heart failure
  • Veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Children having physical or dental procedures
  • Stroke victims and people undergoing physical therapy to regain motor skills
  • People with mental health disorders
  • Autism spectrum disorders
  • Addiction
  • Cancer
  • Heart disease
  • Dementia
  • Developmental disorders
  • Psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia
  • Emotional and behavioral disorders
  • Chronic pain



Additional Information