Petting a dog or cat or spending time with your pets can reduce your blood pressure According to the Mayo Clinic, pet therapy benefits a variety of conditions, including drug addiction. More and more therapy centers are allowing both personal pets and therapy animals into their facilities to help their patients recover. Recent research indicates that pet therapy has many benefits for recovering addicts.
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Pets Provide Companionship
Many times in rehab and recovery you can feel alone and afraid. Pets are extremely comforting when you are lonely and scared. Most people find having their animals around them comforting and calming. A familiar face in a sea of new faces and someone to comfort you when you need to be comforted can make all the difference.
They Teach Unconditional Love
Pet therapy can help you feel more comfortable talking to others in rehab.
Pets teach unconditional love as well as provide it. No matter what you have done in the past, a pet will still love you. They do not judge you on your past actions only what you are doing now. They only want the basics of food, shelter, and affection. By loving you unconditionally, they can teach you how to love again.
If the rehab you are in allows your pet to join you, they can give you some of the comfort of home. If they allow therapy dogs and cats in then each visit provides you with some time to be with a nonjudgmental creature. Most people feel better with animals around, even those with allergies can benefit from therapy dogs. Several breeds do not shed dander like an ordinary dog. These breeds are most often used in therapy environments.
They Help Restore Trust
Not only are pets and therapy animals conversation starters and help you speak to other people in the rehab, they can help you restore your trust in others. The pet trusts you and that can help you trust in others. Most people are more comfortable around animals. They tend to help people open up more to both the pet and others in the rehab. Having animals around can also help build a sense of community and caring among the people around you.
They Help to Treat Mood Disorders
Pets are known to help people with mood disorders and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Many people who suffer from deep depression, anxiety, and other psychiatric illnesses find that having an animal around to comfort them is calming. Therapy dogs are now allowed where most people are and travel with their human companions.
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