As you probably know, spending time with and petting animals (specifically dogs) can help many of us in reducing stress and generally improving out mood. In fact, there is a wealth of research that backs this! Studies show that the simple act of playing with or petting a dog can cause Oxytocin (the "love drug") to increase.
The benefits of being around dogs don't stop there, though; our furry friends can also help to lower blood pressure and reduce stress. Here are some of the additional benefits that pet therapy can have with children (though most apply to adults as well) according to Riley Children's Health:
- Help children deal with painful treatments and conditions, reduce fear and help put children at ease
- Increase positive social behaviors for children with an autism spectrum disorder
- Elevate mood, reduce anxiety and depression and increase a child’s sense of well-being
- Boost energyImprove sleepProvide comfort and support
- Help with boredom and provide a distraction from routine
Because we at Origins Family Counseling are aware of all of the potential benefits of animals, especially in the context of therapy, we offer Canine Assisted Therapy so that you can feel more comfortable and anxiety-free during your session. We work hard to make our office a comfortable place to be, and we ensure that any and all animals in the building are well-behaved, friendly, and up-to-date on their vaccinations.
Currently, the only member of our canine team is the fabulous Poppy, who loves to play and be held, and is owned by one of our team members, Lauren Gay. If you think Canine Assisted Therapy could be right for you, click the link below to find out how to contact us!