Visit with Davis and pet therapy.
Davis' bench overlooks Lynnwood Ravine. Dora has spent hours here visiting her dad.
Dora brought so much joy to Davis and Anj and continues to light up Anj's life (and Dora's grandparents!) Davis loved spending time with all dogs. He had a way with them, he calmed them. Every dog Davis passed had to come up and say hi to him. He loved every encounter.
The value of pet therapy is fairly well known and is scientifically proven. What is the difference between a therapy or emotional support or service dog? According to the Canine Journal; A therapy dog is trained to provide comfort and affection to people in disaster areas, long term care facilities, hospitals or schools for example. Emotional support dogs provide their owners with therapeutic benefits through companionship. A service dog is trained to help people with disabilities such as visual impairments or seizure disorders (and many more).
Paws for People claim the following benefits (Therapy or Emotional Support Dogs):
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, reducing the amount of medication some folks need
For Mental Health
lifts spirits and lessens depression
decreases feelings of isolation and alienation
increases socialization and sense of community
helps children overcome speech and emotional disorders
creates motivation for the client to recover faster
For Literacy Support (PAWS for Reading)
helps children focus better
improves literacy skills
provides non-stressful, non-judgmental environment
encourages the love of reading in specific and learning in general
In Physical Therapy
increases joint movement
improves recovery time
maintains or increases motor skills
provides motivation to move more, stretch farther, exercise longer
Dora has certainly helped our physical and mental health. Davis loved the various therapy dog visits he had during his hospital stays. Most cities have non-profit therapy dog organizations. Look up yours to volunteer or request a visit.