ELDER-TO-ELDER AND PAWS PLUS
Elder-to-Elder is our elder pet therapy placement program for the elderly.
Paws Plus is our disabled pet placement program with a focus on persons with disabilities.
Pet therapy is a broad term that includes animal-assisted therapy and other animal-assisted activities. Animal-assisted therapy is a growing field that uses dogs or other animals to help people recover from or better cope with health problems, such as heart disease, cancer and mental health disorders. In our program we add a layer of social work supervision onto our area shelter “Senior-to-Senor” placement programs for dogs and cats to assure proper breed match, ongoing evaluation of animal care, walking, changing of litter boxes and general placement success. It is also important that the elder person is not burdened with the loss of a placed pet or in reverse the pert is never stranded with the loss of the elder. Careful case assessment and progress notes are maintained with regular home visits.
For Physical Health
- lowers blood pressure
- improves cardiovascular health
- releases endorphins (oxytocin) that have a calming effect
- diminishes overall physical pain
- the act of petting produces an automatic relaxation response, in many cases reducing the amount of medication some need
For Mental Health
- lifts spirits and lessens depression
- decreases feelings of isolation and alienation
- encourages communication
- provides comfort
- increases socialization and sense of community
- reduces boredom
- decreases anxiety
- helps children overcome speech and emotional disorders
- creates motivation for the client to recover faster
- reduces loneliness