How Therapy Dogs are Helping Children to Cure ADHD
Therapy dogs are playing a huge role in the treatment of children who are facing the symptoms of ADHD. Experts believe that the dog therapy is aiding the treatment and giving new hopes to patients by ensuring a better response to treatments.
Time to thank those four-legged angels who are just not being friends of human but a great support in curing the emotional turbulence. Researches have proved that such canine interaction is beneficial for humans who are suffering from ADHD or Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder symptoms. As defined, ‘ADHD is a disorder that makes it difficult for a person to pay attention and control impulsive behaviors. He or she may also be restless and almost constantly active.’ Children are most benefitted as reports say that ADHD children are reluctant to communicate but there has been a significant change in the behavior of these children when they are allowed to mingle with therapy dogs.
The AAT therapy is not new and with this alternative method of therapy the therapy animals are able to work on the process of offering a rehabilitation method and it is proven that the patients are getting a speedy recovery with their association. The CAI (Canine Assisted Interventions) is largely focused on treatment with certified therapy dogs. The influence of the therapy dogs over the psychological and physiological issues are found to be highly beneficial.
How animals become a part of the therapy
One thing experts are pointing out and that is of a person thinks the dog therapy alone can help in ADHD, then there is a mistake there. The animal therapy is just a part of therapy and is highly dependent on how much your child is comfortable with this intervention. As per studies, dogs have helped the kids to keep a control on their stress levels. The child needs to interact independently with the dog and that’s when the therapy works. As the child spends time with the dog, he/she will develop an empathy for the pet and your child will start taking care of the animal. Dogs are undoubtedly a man’s best friend and when it comes to love and companionship no one can beat those affection filled eyes. As your child cuddles with the pet, the stress and anxiety levels will reduce giving your child a mental solace. In some cases, it has been found out that the child begins to communicate with the dog and intends to start a conversation. Doctors believe, these are the early signs of the child to develop socializing skills.
Choosing the right animal for the therapy
Experts recommend that the idea should not be such that you need a kind of treatment and that’s why you bring a therapy animal at home. That might not be the ideal thing to do as you won’t want to hurt the animal while wishing to reap the benefits. You must have a discussion with the family members, especially your child who is facing the symptoms of ADHD and ask about the kind of animals he/she likes. Find out if that option is feasible and accordingly act. Remember, you are not getting just a dog, you are welcoming a new member in the family who just needs the same amount of love and care that you wish to receive from your family.
Experts never give a nod over the idea of surprising your child with a pet. Especially children who are suffering from ADHD is far more sensitive and would get more stressed to this uncalled thing. Just discuss the entire process and ask your child for suggestions. Ask your child if he/she would wish to take care of the pet. Strategize the routine of the pet like the walk, feeding or playing times. Do not just throw the responsibility of doing things to your child. Even if your child wishes to do it all, expect that something would be missed out as in such cases the children often fail to remember a perfect schedule of tasks. Make it a point to get things done as a team which will allow your child to understand the interest and engage more with the pet dog gradually.
Which will be the right dog for the therapy
Experts say that there is no hard and fast rule that you should keep in mind while choosing your dog. But speaking in a more general sense, breeds like Labrador and Golden Retriever are much friendly dogs and are found to be good associates of children. Before just picking up a dog, you must spend a considerable amount of time with the pet. You need to know the behavioral pattern of the dog before you bring it to your house. Experts advise to discuss the behavior pattern of your child with the breeder and ask for the suggestions before you bring home the fluffy cute little thing in the family.
Just not ADHD
The therapy of those cute furry friends are not just for ADHD children but are there to support war veterans who are suffering from PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder symptoms. In the last few years, the contributions of therapy dogs are also helping the students to release the exam stress. In a study, 56 students were allowed to spend a considerable amount of time before and after examinations. It was found out that these children were capable of handling stress and anxiety better. Experts suggest that such low-cost intervention of therapy will be beneficial to the students and college authorities should take a notice on the matter. In the meantime, Oklahoma City has welcomed the two newest members in the EMSA paramedics. The two golden poodle puppies named Ollie and Tulsa will be under training for the next few months after which they will be available to attend the stress calls and offer the much-needed support to patients. Many companies are allowing the employees’ pet to the office once in a while and it has been found that it too works as an occupational therapy, though the dogs in such cases are not always therapy dogs.
In a study, it has been found out that on an average a dog is able to identify around 165 different words. Not just words, but when a dog is with a deaf patient, they are able to understand sign languages or sounds that work as instructions. The wonder of dogs are never underestimated and the stories about these adorable creatures never end. And, as dog lovers say no one gets disappointed with the furry friend around and they are nothing but cute balls of happiness.