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Saturday, January 5, 2008

How do dog's help in Therapy?

Hi, It's Abbey...Bode is sleeping near the tree trying to protect it from being taken out...I don't think he wants Christmas to end! I will put a picture so you can see!

I decided to write a quick blog about what we do when we get to go to W-O-R-K. I spelled it because I have figured out that if our mom and dad don't want us to know they are going to work without us that they put those letters together and then I get sad!

Anyhow, Bode and I are big helpers in the playroom. The playroom is where the counseling takes place with all the children at work. We know that when the sound machine is kicked on that we are in work mode and we cannot be wild and silly anymore. For me, that means I need to stop jumping and licking and for Bode, it means no jumping and to be careful with his big tail (it knocks over people and toys sometimes, but he doesn't mean to). We never get to go together, unless it is a paperwork day because we like to play with the toys together and then there is no room for the kids!

Each session is different, as every child likes to play with different things and talk about different things. Sometimes there are silly things that happen during a counseling session; like the dress up clothes being put on me and then other times, the kids just want me to curl next to them on the couch or floor. I know a lot of tricks, so some of the kids like to give me "cookies" if I will do things like shake their hand or lay down on command. We also get play outside with some kids and even go for walks during the therapy time.

My favorite thing is helping kids smile and letting the ones that are crying know that I am there for them and it is okay to be sad sometimes. I get nervous if someone is angry, but I think that when I get scared of the bop bag that the kids learn that there are better ways to show their anger so others around them don't get fearful. Bode and I always leave a session happy and see smiles on the children's faces when they leave too--our biggest job is to be supportive and help them play through their situation!

We will share more about some of our jobs a therapy dogs soon...


Anonymous said...

Abbey, you and Bode do great work helping the kids!

ChefSara said...

What a great's very good inspiration for puppies like me that want to be therapy dogs...oh...and you're right about the belly rubs. My mom and dad give me belly rubs every night before bed!!