For cancer patients, the healing qualities of dogs are immeasurable. Here are just a few of the important things dogs can provide to people with cancer:
- Relaxation. Spending time with an animal is soothing, and can be a vital respite in the course of a busy, often painful day.
- Safety. Dogs are great listeners, and cancer patients can talk to them about their fears (or choose not to talk and simply enjoy their company in quiet).
- Tactile sensation. Petting an animal releases endorphins, which reduces stress and improves mood.
- Distraction. Paying attention to a dog can help patients forget about their pain and frustration for a time, which invites healing and improved health.
- Socialization. Dogs invite conversation, and can help patients express themselves more freely to doctors and loved ones.
- Assist in walking and prevent falls
- Turn lights and appliances on and off
- Carry groceries, bags, and packages
- Pick up items that are dropped or out of reach
- Bark for help and/or retrieve a phone
- The Memorial Sloan Keating Cancer Center’s Caring Canines program has provided dog therapy to patients since 2007.
- At Siteman Cancer Center in St. Louis, the TOUCH (Therapy of Unique Canine Helpers) program provides weekly visits with therapy dogs.
- The Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center in Nashville has a pet visitation program to bring companionship and levity to patients and their families.
- Cancer Treatment Centers of America provides animal assisted therapy from certified therapy dogs and their handlers at five centers nationwide.
- The AKC keeps a complete list of therapy dog programs in the U.S.
If your cancer diagnosis has resulted in permanent disability, you may qualify for a long-term assistance dog. Visit Service Dog Central for more information.
If your dog is calm, gentle, and well-behaved, she might be a good fit for therapy dog training. Being a therapy dog handler can be incredibly rewarding, as you’re helping your dog make a real difference in the lives of people in need. These are just a few resources to get you started:
- A Step-by-Step Guide to Becoming a Service Dog
- Therapy Dogs International
- Pet Partners
- The Good Dog Foundation
- Pet Partners
For cancer patients who qualify, dog therapy, assistance dogs, and even just time with a beloved family pet can have an incredible impact on mood and health. It’s something us dog people have always known: dogs improve our lives, and sometimes even save them.
Also keeping your dog healthy is super important. Web Source Obesity is one of the top reasons a dogs life can be cut short. Just look at the statistics and there can be no denying this worldwide trend. The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP) reports that, in 2017, an estimated 56% of dogs in North America are obese. This is a truly shocking statistic and it tells us that there needs to be a major overhaul in the mindset of us pet owners.
For more info check out the link! Web Source