For most people, dogs can brighten an otherwise gloomy day with their devotion and unconditional love. This is especially true for children in the residential treatment program who are dealing with severe emotional trauma.
Pet Therapy has been an integral part of YBGR’s Recreational Therapy Department for over twenty years. Their goals are to enhance a child’s ability to cooperate with others, problem solve, reduce stress, improve coordination, and improve overall physical well-being.
The benefits of Pet Therapy for a child’s mental and physical health are many: decreasing feelings of isolation and depression, bridging communication gaps, providing comfort, lowering anxiety and agitation, stabilizing blood pressure, and stimulating feelings of joy and belonging.
When youth walk into the Uihlein Recreation Center and see Emmy Lou and Cooper, their faces just light up. The simple act of petting dogs produces an automatic relaxation response, and when dogs are used in therapy sessions, children feel more comfortable and tend to be more open in expressing their thoughts and feelings. Cooper and Emmy Lou (L to R) are both Golden Retrievers and certified Therapy Dogs through the Delta Society and Pet Partners.
Consider a gift to support the Pet Therapy Program to keep Emmy Lou and Cooper certified and healthy. Call or email us for more information on how you can participate. email@example.com | 406.656.8772