Animal-assisted therapy is not a stand-alone method; instead, it is intended to be an add-on to other services, like psychotherapy or supportive counseling.
Animal-Assisted Therapy utilizes dogs who have been trained to be especially calm and obedient in order to provide a therapeutic presence for patients experiencing a range of medical or mental health conditions. Before a dog can participate in animal-assisted therapy, the dog and its owner must undergo training.
Once a dog and his or her owner have completed training and certification, they can begin visiting with patients. A dog may visit a patient for 10 to 15 minutes to allow the patient to pet and interact with it, which is believed to confer a therapeutic benefit.
Meet Bradley, Certified Therapy Dog!
Bradley is a 3 year old Bichpoo. This January he passed his Therapy Dog Certification test through The Alliance of Therapy Dogs. Bradley will be spending time in the offices providing pets, cuddles, and comfort to clients who express interest in working with Bradley. When not working in his official capacity, Bradley enjoys treats, sleeping, and belly rubs.
Meet Loki, Certified Therapy Dog
Loki is a 1 year old Great Pyrenees mix rescued from Mississippi as a puppy by volunteers at the Stray Network Dog Rescue in Pennsylvania. She completed her Therapy Dog Certification through The Alliance of Therapy Dogs shortly after her 1st birthday. Loki is excited and proud to become a Pawsitivity Ambassador for Bridge to Balance to help educate youth and adults about mental health while also helping individuals who may be grieving and need comfort, are feeling stressed or anxious, or maybe are just in need of a cuddle with a furry friend and someone to listen. Loki is also available in the office to provide pet assisted therapy or just to greet you and say "hi."
When Loki isn't working at Bridge to Balance, she also volunteers her services at Tri-State Canine Response Team as a therapy dog. She is beginning her training with Tri-State to also become a crisis response dog. Her favorite past times are playing with her younger sister, Nala, who is also in training to become a therapy dog and spending time with her human family.
If you are interested in spending time with Loki, please contact us.