Why Dogs?

Studies have shown that Therapy Dogs...​

Reduce stress and anxiety with a corresponding  decrease in blood pressure, heart rate, and stress hormone cortisol

Increase “health inducing and social inducing” hormones such as oxytocin, dopamine and endorphins

Provide social support and motivation

Make therapy fun and engaging

Provide immediate feedback and opportunity for clients to practice skill sets and recalibrate

Destigmatise therapy

Other Frequently Asked Questions

Can I choose not to have a dog in a counselling session?


Of course. While we do see a significant difference in how the Therapy Dog helps our Counsellor build rapport more easily with the client, we understand that not everyone appreciates having a Therapy Dog in a counselling session.




How does it work with a dog in a counselling session?


Depending on the client, our Counsellor can lead sessions where our Therapy Dog takes a more passive role by offering their comforting presence, or lead more interactive sessions, where the client gets to participate in activities with our Therapy Dog. These activities are tailored to help the client gain perspectives related to the challenges that he/she faces. Our Therapist specializes in eliciting relevant learning outcomes through analogies that can be translated, and generalized to life applications.




How many counselling sessions are required typically?


This varies for different individuals. Some clients achieve their goals within 5-10 sessions, while others take a much longer time. We have also got clients that choose to check in with us regularly even after their emotional/behavioural goals have been achieved.




Are dogs also involved in the Psychological Assessments?


No, they will not be present for Assessments




How is this different from having a dog as a pet?


While any interaction with a sweet-natured dog can induce positive emotions, the dogs alone (especially untrained ones) are incapable of leading goal-directed interventions. Our Counsellor is professionally trained to help clients gain different perspectives through activities with our Therapy Dog (which is also professionally trained). These activities are tailored to help the client gain perspectives related to the challenges that he/she faces. Our Counsellor specializes in eliciting relevant learning outcomes through analogies that can be translated, and generalized to life applications.




What exactly is Animal Assisted Therapy (AAT) and what are its benefits?


AAT is defined as "a goal-directed intervention in which an animal that meets specific criteria is an integral part of the treatment process. AAT is directed and/or delivered by a health/human service professional with specialized expertise, and within the scope of practice of his/her profession. AAT is designed to promote improvement in human physical, social, emotional, and/or cognitive functioning [cognitive functioning refers to thinking and intellectual skills]. AAT is provided in a variety of settings and may be group or individual in nature. This process is documented and evaluated." (Pet Partners) According to the International Institute for Animal Assisted Play Therapy, Animal Assisted Play Therapy (AAPT), is a full integration of play therapy with animal-assisted therapy, primarily for mental health/psychotherapy and education purposes. It is valuable in helping children, adolescents, and adults, and can be provided for individuals, groups, and families. AAPT has been defined as “the integrated involvement of animals in the context of play therapy, in which appropriately-trained therapists and animals engage with child, family, & adult clients primarily in play interventions aimed at improving the client’s psychosocial health, while simultaneously ensuring the animal’s well-being and voluntary engagement in the process. Play and playfulness are essential ingredients of the interactions & the relationship” (VanFleet, 2013).