Fraser Booth was diagnosed with autism at the early age of 18 months old. Louise, the boy’s mother, was told that the boy would never fit into a normal school due to his extreme behavior. The boy was then introduced to a cat named Billy, of which an immediate spark between the two was made.
When the two met, the cat was able to instantly calm the boy; something his mother would have to go to great lengths before achieving this feat. Before, the boy’s mother and father used to help each other just to get the boy to take a bath. Now, it would only take the cat to put both his paws on the edge of the water to calm the boy and take his bath properly.
The mother states that the boy and his cat are now like best friends.
Source: Billy the rescue cat helps young boy with autism
Andres Somoza, animal care coordinator at Safe Harbor Humane Society in Kenosha, states some ideas for dogs and dog owners to battle boredom while staying indoors. Cold weather and heavy snow can limit people and dogs alike in enjoying the outdoors. The good news is that they can still focus all that extra energy onto something else.
For instance, dog owners can have their dogs do a bit of nose work whilst inside the house. Let the K9 engage in using their noses in sniffing out their favorite treat or toy. Dog owners can also play with their pet pooches with interactive puzzle toys to keep the mind at work.
Also, dog owners should provide their dogs with a warm place to sleep that is off the floor and free from drafts.
Source: Can’t get outside? Play mind games with your dog
Valerie Money, a Petco Dog Trainer, came into the ABC 7 Eyewitness studio along with her dog, Beauty, to show the public how to play with your pets while indoors.
Puzzles are one example to keep your pets busy and happy at the same time. It will challenge them while letting them have fun. Another example is playing hide-and-seek or red light, green light with your pets.
Blowing bubbles are a great way to keep pets happy, especially for cats. Musical chairs is also a great way to keep pets happy while letting them socialize with their friends.
Letting pets have fun will keep them mentally alert while still allowing them to enjoy themselves.
A 20-acre farm north of Fayetteville has become a place for healing for wear veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Horses That Heal is a non-profit organization serves both veterans and youth that are at-risk of acquiring the disorder with equine assisted psycho-therapy. The organization is situated at Avalon Farms and is located at East Reeves Bridge Road.
The Department of Veteran Affairs have reported that an average of 11 to 20 percent of war veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan suffer from PTSD. People that have not yet given the program a try are usually hitting “rock bottom.” Although the therapy is not targeted for just about anyone, those who have tried it have found it to be more helpful than other treatments.
Source: Equine-assisted therapy helps soldiers deal with PTSD
Mikaila Wireman works as a volunteer for the Northwest Therapeutic Riding Center. She is a behavioral neuroscience major and loves horses since she was still eleven years old. Her passions for equines and education has helped her and the center’s clients in achieving great results.
The horses in the center, along with volunteers like Wireman, helps people with mental and physical disabilities through equine assisted therapy sessions. The average client for the center works with two volunteers that will help them throughout the entire session.
Wireman states that a great part of being with the center is seeing the patients grow.
Source: Horses serve as therapy tools for people with mental disabilities
An anti-bullying program called “Paws Against Bullying” is using therapy dogs to teach schools about bullying and what are its effects. The program started three years ago in Waco and volunteers show that bullies come in all shapes and sizes.
The program incorporates a smaller dog and a bigger dog. After which, volunteers ask students on who they think is the bully. Majority of students will say that the bigger dog is the bully just because he is big; however, if the smaller dog were to say something mean to the bigger dog then the situation is then reversed.
The therapy dogs also portray how a victim feels after being bullied.
Source: Therapy Dogs Bring New Perspective On Bullying
A new “spokesdog” is teaching human beings of the effects of bullying and the greatness of empathy towards others. Marshall, a 2-year old yellow labrador mix, was saved from a near death experience after being attacked by other dogs. He was seen with a badly injured leg, numerous dog bites, and huddled into a corner of a filthy pen.
The dog was a victim of hoarding and the children of the hoarder were the ones who reported their own mother to the authorities. The hoarder was featured on Animal Planet’s TV show called “Confessions: Animal Hoarding.” It was the TV crew that found the dog close to dying.
Marshall was brought home by Clayton resident Cyndi Willenbrock after the K9 received therapy and medication.
Source: Marshall The Miracle Dog
Rebecca K. Connor, an author from birdchannel.com, reports about the myths that are being talked about our talking feathered friends. Many new parrot owners bring their bird home hoping that it will start talking but most of them tend to come up disappointed.
Parrot owners should know that it does mean that a parrot needs to be alone for it to learn how to talk. Furthermore, it does not also mean that only hand-raised parrots are able to learn how to mimic human speech. Parrots also have an uncanny ability of copying what people say but it does not mean they understand everything we say.
Parrots do not love to curse but sometimes they pick up the idea because of their owners. Lastly, it does not mean that if a parrot learns how to talk that it is can already be a sign of their intelligence.
Source: True Or False: Parrot Talking Myths
Paws Against Bullying is a Texas group that uses therapy dogs to try and help prevent bullying in schools. They use “man’s best friend” to shine a new light on one of America’s growing problem which is bullying.
At least two dogs are brought into schools by dog handlers. Large and small dogs are being used in the program to ask questions and demonstrate how bullies can come in all shapes and sizes.
The program is spearheaded by Angel Paws Waco.
Fancy and Romeo are horses who helps Angie Payne with her work. She uses Equine Therapy to aide their patients’ needs. They deal with people who are experiencing trauma, grief, anxiety and depression.
Gestalt therapy is described as being based in expression and relationship with the goals of increasing awareness of the present moment, experiencing feelings and expressing emotions, exploring patterns in relationship, and integrating new patterns of behavior and ways of relating. With the help of the horses, stresses were released and new hopes were found.
People who have had experience with the program found it to be a special gift.
Source: Equine therapy offers hope for hurting people