Animal-assisted therapy (AAT) is a type of therapy that involves animals as a form of treatment. The goal of AAT is to improve a patient’s social, emotional, or cognitive functioning. Advocates state that animals can be useful for educational and motivational effectiveness for participants. A therapist who brings along a pet may be viewed as being less threatening, increasing the rapport between patient and therapist....and a therapy dog... ? Let me provide information from Wikipedia once more:
A therapy dog is a dog trained to provide affection and comfort to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with learning difficulties.Here is a really interesting article from National Geographic online click here - the article is about golden retriever therapy dogs "Canines bring comfort to Newtown survivors and others in crisis" The topic is really broad. There are many health benefits of spending time with a dog, including emotional health improvement. Below a volunteer therapy dogs.