How dogs help stroke survivors

Hand-over-hand therapy

Hand-over-hand therapy

The Love Dog Adventures animal therapy program partners with rehabilitation centers and one of the most rewarding elements of what we do is working with people who have had strokes.

Benny is a specialist in this area and has learned so many behaviors that aid in stroke rehab.

Stretch!

Stretch!

Sometimes he works with people learning to stand up, balance and even walk. He is the perfect walking dog and we have a unique method of using leashes so that both the patient and the dog is safe, safe, safe.

Benny will stride at any pace and stop when he needs to stop and sit or lay down, waiting for the person to begin moving again.

Benny loves a good wheelchair ride!

Benny loves a good wheelchair ride!

He is also extremely proficient at staying still on a table or lap so hand-over-hand assisted petting, brushing, stroking can be done. He will stay in place forever while we wait for an open palm to be possible.

His favorite task is showing how he can stretch his whole body thus encouraging someone to stretch their limbs. And when he works with young people, they love working with the dog and never miss a therapy dog when Benny will be their partner.

Waiting in rehab for his client to arrive

Waiting in rehab for his client to arrive

Sometimes we don’t have a specific client we are paired with so Benny just says hello in the gym and everyone gets a much needed break in the hard work they are doing.

The greatest reward for human and dog is a big hug

The greatest reward for human and dog is a big hug

Even a Love Dog gets tired!

Even a Love Dog gets tired!

And never forget that therapy animals are there for the staff and family members as well. One time we sat the whole hour with a parent watching their child struggle through a difficult session. Perhaps this was the most worthwhile hour spent.