Here is an article I wrote in 2005 about the Animal Facilitated Therapy program at Whittier Rehabilitation Hospital at which I am the Director of Neuropsychological and Psychological Services. It is accompanied by a couple dozen photographs of patient interactions with the animals. They are priceless but I cannot seem to find their final resting place on one of my back-up drives. Perhaps one day I will publish them on these pages. Animal facilitated therapy has immeasurable benefits in psychological well being of rehabilitation patients. To this day Lily, a resplendant chocolate lab, remains on the job – nine years after I first wrote this paper. To this day the gift Lily brings our patients helps trigger the critical shift they make from “feeling sick” to feeling well again – hopeful to regain thier independence and go on to life.
Michael Sefton, 2014
The health benefits of using animals in the context of physical rehabilitation are well known. Click the link below to be connected with the full article.