Handbook on Animal-Assisted Therapy: Theoretical Foundations and Guidelines for Practice

 
9780123886002: Handbook on Animal-Assisted Therapy: Theoretical Foundations and Guidelines for Practice

Handbook on Animal-Assisted Therapy provides a comprehensive overview of the many ways in which animals can be used to assist therapists. Coverage includes how animals can assist specific patient populations (children, the disabled, AIDS patients, etc), how animals can aid in specific settings (hospitals, prisons, independent practice, etc), and how professionals can best select appropriate animals (species, breed, and individual temperament) and design an AAT program. Humans have long had a special bond with animals, initially as work animals, then as pets, and now more frequently as therapeutic companions. Animals help the sick recover more quickly and help the aged live longer and more satisfying lives. Specially trained animals are now helping stroke victims, the handicapped, and others to regain or build lost faculties. Increasingly, animals assist in nonphysical/medical therapies, helping the stressed and angry relax and the shy be more forthcoming. Contributors represent the top people in the field from hospital settings, vet hospitals, animal training centers, and therapists in practice.

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Book Description:

The "standard" in the field of AAT

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The use of animal assisted therapy, also referred to as animal assisted interventions, has grown tremendously since the first edition of this work. Used with a far greater variety of patient populations and to treat more types of psychological problems, the research and practice literature in the field has expanded. This second edition of Handbook on Animal Assisted Therapy highlights the evidence basis of these therapies, updates original chapters with new research information and it’s application to practice, and includes three new chapters on the implementation of animal assisted therapies with children.

The book is divided into four sections. Section 1 introduces background information on the animal-human bond, the historical value of this bond, definitions of animal assisted interventions (AAI), the evolution of such interventions toward the improvement of human function and quality of life. Section 2 provides an overview of the design and implementation of AAI services. Coverage includes how to select animal species to match to patient populations and the factors that influence performance of specific animal species. Section 3 documents the therapeutic efficacy of AAI with specific populations including children, persons with chronic disorders and AIDS, the elderly, and in specialized settings. Additional chapters address how animals can be incorporated into standard psychotherapy techniques. Section 4 covers special issues including assessment tools regarding the efficacy of AAI programs, coordination with veterinarians, and the ethical treatment of therapy animals.

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