Dr. Julie Ann Allender | Psychologist

Benefits of pet therapy – Warm Fuzzy Therapy
Who says therapy has to be scary, boring or something to hide? Dr. Allender’s approach is not novel. It is just something that we can now admit.

Dr. Allender believes animals need to be brought back into the American lifestyle She calls it the re-orientation of animals into American life. She believes they were removed mistakenly due to the American need for cleanliness and order and that the re-orientation is important to return to a healthier lifestyle. Animals historically have given comfort, love and been person’s best helper. We need them in our lives, parks, schools, nursing homes, restaurants, hospitals and wherever people are allowed to go.

The following are some of the wonderful benefits and experiences that Dr. Allender has experienced in her practice with her dogs. As a side note, she is not partial to only dogs. Unfortunately, she is allergic to cats.

  • Her dogs have helped:
  • Clients to feel welcome
  • Clients who were silent or shy feel comfortable talking
  • Clients find a reason to get up in the morning
  • Clients who threatened to commit suicide stay alive
  • Children to feel comfortable coming to therapy sessions
  • Teenagers to feel less threatened and less embarrassed coming to therapy sessions
  • Clients who are afraid of animals to be less afraid
  • Clients who were afraid of animals adopt an animal
  • Children struggling with divorce & custody issues feel less unhappy
  • Disabled individuals feel loved and important again
  • Build ideas in therapy sessions

Pet therapy is also known to do the following nationwide:

  • Pet therapy has been found to be extremely effective when introduced into nursing homes in helping to
  • Lower need for medical treatments
  • Decreasing the need for medications
  • Increase the longevity of elderly
  • Increasing the overall happiness of the residents
  • Schools have incorporated successful reading programs founded by therapy-dog handler Sandi Martin from Salt Lake City, Utah with the use of animals that “listen” to the children read.
  • Therapeutic interventions with animals have long been used to increase the likelihood of successful treatment of individuals of all ages
  • Increase more appropriate and successful pet management
  • Decreasing hostile and angry treatment of animals
  • Increase understanding of animal behavior
  • Animals have increased the likelihood of individuals with illnesses, even terminal illnesses live longer
Julie Ann Allender, Ed.D.
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