Defining Terms Used for Animals Working in Support Roles for People with Support Needs
Date: 1st August, 2022
Although animals are being employed for a growing number of roles to support people, the terms used to describe those animals (e.g., “therapy animal” and “emotional support animal”) can be confusing. The same term may be used to describe different types of work, or the same role can be described with different terms. This paper presents the results of a collaboration between over 100 researchers, practitioners, and end users of animal-based supports from all over the world.
Summary: Acute stroke can have devastating emotional impacts on people and their close companions. Animal Assisted Intervention (AAI) has been shown to improve stroke-affected patients' mood, enhancing quality of life. DOgSS is a Royal Adelaide Hospital (RAH) Stroke Unit pilot research study in South Australia to find out if dog-visits make a difference to the expressed mood of stroke patients and visiting carers, family and friends, and impact on Stroke Unit staff.
Canine-assisted occupational therapy for children on the autism spectrum
Date: 1st March, 2020
Canine-assisted occupational therapy for children on the autism spectrum has been proposed as a means of enhancing goal-directed interventions, yet there remain no clear guidelines of its safe & ethical practice. Introducing a therapy dog into occupational therapy practices with children on the autism spectrum was found to require a complex & multifaceted set of skills requiring additional training to support the safety & wellbeing of both client & therapy dog.
Royal Commission Submission on Aged Care and Companion Animals
Date: 10th September, 2019
While policy models and advice on how to include pets in aged care have been developed the reality is that pet-friendly aged accommodation, particularly when higher levels of care are needed continues to be limited. Limitations include the time-poverty of staff and the reality that staff are employed and trained to care for people not animals – creating a counter concern on the part of animal advocates. There are some services that provide companion animal contact in aged care services (visiting
The benefits of animal-assisted services to patients and staff to childrens hospital
Date: 6th June, 2019
Online survey of parents & staff, conducted to assess the effect of an animal-assisted intervention (AAI) service at a UK children’s university teaching hospital. Volunteer handlers with five golden retriever dogs provided AAIs across all eight paediatric wards including day, medical, surgical, oncology & intensive care. Interventions ranged from ‘meet & greet’ to assisting nursing care, physiotherapy & occupational therapy, as well as providing distraction during blood taking & other tests.
Pets as suicide protection in older people's lives
Date: 30th December, 2018
An unanticipated finding during research on the role that pets play in the health of older adults, was that pets had protected some from suicide. Given that older people are more vulnerable to fatal first attempts, understanding protective factors in this population group is vital. Pets emerged as protective for some older people in our research however caution needs to be exercised in treating this finding as an un-nuanced protection for older Australians.