Therapy dogs can improve the quality of life for those who live alone

Therapy Dogs

Having just adopted a cute little puppy (and possible therapy dog), I was inspired to share what I know about pets, especially dogs, assisting those who are mostly immobile or homebound. Not everyone of course enjoys animals, but for those that do…

Therapy Dogs’ owners are dedicated to providing services to individuals living at home through “Home Visit Programs”. The goal is to help people in need maintain and enhance the best possible level of independent living.

Whether a hospice patient, an aging patient or a disabled individual, Dog Therapy Associations hope to improve their quality of life by bringing Therapy Dogs to their homes where they feel most comfortable. Often, the dogs add a sense of normalcy. Their visits help people feel as if their lives are a little better and at times, more complete. Life may seem more manageable, especially to one who has to stay in bed, if they spend some time with Therapy Dogs. The visits help to promote healing because the patient is able touch and pet the dog. This allows them to feel like everyone else and their happiness and contentment helps them to do better.

Families are often the primary caregivers for a person who requires care at home. While the dogs are visiting, the caregiver has some time to rest or do necessary chores as the dog provides the love and companionship to the patient.

Studies have proven that human or animal touch, hugs and love go far to improve the quality of life for those who live alone, whether a spouse has passed on or one has remained single over the years.

A number of condo associations state a policy of no pets allowed. But by law, a “Service Dog” is allowed everywhere! There is a difference between a “Therapy Dog” and a “Service Dog”. But a dog can be both! If you would like more information on Therapy Dogs, please visit “TDI”, “Therapy Dogs International”

Just an additional note: This is Maddie, a potential Therapy Dog in some future day. She first has to stop chewing furniture and learn puppy dog kisses on command only! She is 7 weeks old.

Posted on: August 18, 2017