Therapy Dog

therapy dog licking girl
The human animal bond is a mutual relationship

between humans and animals

Research reveals significant benefits to both humans and animals when the human animal bond is experienced.

Benefits of therapy animals and the human animal bond include but are not limited to: enhancing one’s mental and psychological health by reducing anxiety and help with depression, lowering blood pressure and stress, encouraging exercise, and facilitating memory and socialization.

The Benefits of Therapy Animals

Therapy animals often motivate children to engage in challenging, non-preferred activities. They also provide children with unique sensory experiences. Even something as simple as petting a dog provides children with tactile sensory input. A calm and gentle dog often helps regulate children’s sensory systems. A child’s interoception (sense of the internal state of the body) is activated by the indescribable experience of the human animal bond. Many children find that eye contact and socialization is easier with the companionship of an animal. Therapy animals help children improve their self-confidence with skills such as reading and writing. Therapy dogs can even help non-verbal children learn sign language. Therapy animals are so important and provide numerous benefits to those fortunate enough to receive their services and experience the human animal bond.

therapy dog reading book
therapy dog with paw on foot

What Inspires You?

Therapy animals are trained, evaluated, and registered with an official therapy animal organization. Handlers are often required to complete coursework to learn about safety, animal behavior, and reading their therapy animal’s cues. Therapy dogs and their handlers are evaluated as a therapy team to ensure that both the dog and the human are compatible, safe, and well trained. After a therapy dog and his or her handler are evaluated with success and are registered with an official therapy animal association they are then eligible to be invited into facilities such as assisted living facilities, schools, and hospitals.

Sensible Sensory Spaces, LLC’s owner, Amy Molley, is passionate about volunteering with her therapy dogs and advocating for the human animal bond. She believes in the vast benefits of therapy animals. Amy is proud to have her therapy dogs registered with Pet Partners and strives to assist Pet Partners in creating a framework and setting the standards for appropriately incorporating therapy dogs to perform and enhance AAA (Animal Assisted Activities), AAI (Animal Assisted Interventions), and AAT (Animal Assisted Therapy) in the profession of Occupational Therapy.

Meet Meg

Amy Molly with therapy dog
Meg was found in South Georgia severely abused and neglected. She was severely starved, had stage 4 heartworms, had broken leg resulting in amputation, was flea infested, suffered skin infections, was sun terribly burned, had injuries to her eye lid and body, was covered in lumps and bumps, and the list goes on. She was rescued by Atlanta Weimaraner Club Rescue in June 2017. Amy Molley instantly fell in love with Meg while volunteering with the rescue. She fostered Meg and a few months later adopted her. Meg spent a year recovering from injury and medical conditions as result of horrific abuse. Meg was loved and adored by Amy and her family and went on to become a therapy dog. She was an absolutely amazing therapy dog and her purpose was so great. She was calm and gentle and brought comfort and joy to everyone that she met. People always gravitated towards Meg everywhere she went. It was evident that Meg was in tune with people and their feelings. She would tripaw hop into a room and always knew who needed her and just what to do. She volunteered at assisted living facilities, women and children’s centers, and provided home visits upon request. Meg helped comfort individuals with depression. A special therapy visit allowed her to bring joy to a woman who actively rescued dogs for years. The lady was at an age where she was no longer able to care for dogs and her health was declining. Visiting with Meg brought the woman joy and motivated her to continue to thrive in her final years. Meg knew approximately 12 signs and even helped teach children sign language. She comforted children victim of domestic violence and abuse and provided companionship and a healing emotional bond that she herself as a victim of abuse understood all too well. Meg helped children build confidence with reading and academic skills by lending her big beautiful ears of velvet and an encouraging paw. Peace surrounded Meg and it was felt when she walked into a room. Watching her provide others with the human animal bond was like magic. Amy was truly honored to be Meg’s handler and volunteer along her side. Meg set the stage for Amy to continue volunteering with therapy animals and to advocate for the importance of healing and therapeutic benefits of the human animal bond. Meg inspired those who were a part of her road to recovery, the therapy dog community, and the tripaw community. Meg’s spirit lives on in a charity called Meg’s Village. Meg’s Village is a 501c3 non-profit in honor of Meg that funds rescue dogs who have disabilities, special needs, or medical conditions as a result of neglect and abuse.