Animal Assisted Therapy includes the use of animals in the therapeutic approach to mental health treatment. Many studies have found that animal assisted therapy improves outcomes in emotional well-being for people with autism, behavioral issues, medical problems, depression, anxiety, and other issues. Animals can bring a sense of calm and safety to a person who rarely feels these things. Some people find it easier to develop a bond with an animal over a person, particularly if the person has been traumatized in an intimate way by a trusted loved one. Animals can be a useful adjunct to traditional therapy to help people regulate emotions, develop a healthier sense of self-worth and trust, and improve communication and socialization skills. Therapy animals often work in clinics, therapeutic programs, schools, homes, and hospitals.
At Roots to Wings, Lacey eagerly fits the role of Therapy Dog. Her favorite place to be is with people, particularly in their laps! Her sweet demeanor makes her an excellent fit for the job. With my work with children in foster care, I find that the kiddos can relate to Lacey who was herself adopted out of puppy foster care. Lacey decreases isolation for these kids, empowers them, and gives them hope.
Lacey is still a bit of a puppy but is learning fast. She is eager to learn, intelligent, and curious. She is looking forward to making regular appearances at the office and other places in the community as her skills are utilized as a community volunteer in schools and hospitals.