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Canine Assisted Therapy Gaining Popularity at Assisted Living Homes

canine assisted therapyAnimal companionship has long been used to boost the spirits of the elderly, and provide them with a constant source of comfort in their daily lives. The extra sense of security aides the elderly in being active as they want to take care of their animal companion, which allows them to give affection and receive it back. The therapeutic use of companion animals in assisted living, and other health care settings is gaining ground as more organizations are getting into the mix to address the growing need. One new organization that is receiving attention lately is the Florida based non-profit organization Canine Assisted Therapy, (C.A.T.). C.A.T. started in August 2009, and has always performed extensive background checks on their volunteers. They also have rigorous testing standards for their dogs, which are more thorough than most other animal therapy organizations. C.A.T. has these testing standards so that they can place the right dogs with the right volunteers to make a great team, for when they go into various health care facilities.

However all the work that the Canine Assisted Therapy organization is doing in Florida may hit a little hiccup soon, as new laws going into place August 1st will require people who care for the elderly and disabled in Florida to meet stricter background screening requirements. C.A.T. welcomes the new change, as Executive Director Debra M. Berger was quoted saying that “We are thrilled to have many new volunteers because other therapy organizations are unable or unwilling to comply with the new law. We are also receiving many requests from facilities requesting our services because we are the only pet therapy organization that will be able to visit patients unaccompanied by a staff member.” This new law will actually allow C.A.T. to expand and push their services into other Florida counties.

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About the Author
Ellen grew up on the east coast and spent 10 years working in senior homes during her 20's and 30's before taking a break to raise her 3 children. Now that her children are in college, Ellen uses her knowledge of senior care to help her write about all of the latest industry news. Ellen is a fabulous seamstress, and when not writing about the senior care industry, you can find her sewing away on her latest fashion creation. Ellen tagged this post with: , , Read 11 articles by Ellen
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